The Wikileaks founder Julian Assange and his lawyers have on several occasions criticized the Swedish judicial system and claimed that all possibilities of a fair trial have been eradicated.
The prosecutor has been accused of breach of duty and the investigation has been criticized for being a politicial conspiracy. Assange has refered to Sweden as the “Saudi Arabia of feminism”.
Expressen can today reveal that there actually existed both a political and a personal connection between one of the women plaintiffs and one of the police interrogators, whose preliminary questioning weighed heavily when an on duty prosecutor decided order the arrest of Assange last year.
The police interrogator and the woman got to know each other through the Swedish social democratic party, with which both are involved.
The police interrogator has amongst other things been on the board of the HBT (homo-, bi- and transsexual) social democrats. On her homepage she has published pictures of herself together with the retired leader of the party Mona Sahlin, and the former minister Thomas Bodström. The same Bodström who together with the social democrat Claes Borgström runs the law firm that has been hired by the plaintiffs in the Assange-investigation.
At the same time the police interrogator has - despite participating in the criminal investigation against Assange - commented negatively about the Wikileaks founder on her facebook page.
“Way to go, Claes Borgström!!!”
When the Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet recently let it’s readers chat with Assange the interrogator commented:
“What the heck is this??? Judgement zero!!!
The day before she wrote in a status update on her Facebook-page:
“Way to go, Claes Borgström!!!”
In another status update from late February the police interrogator wrote about “The overrated Assange bubble ready to burst”.
In their blogs, the police interrogator and the woman who reported Julian Assange have been open about their friendship. As recently as February 10 this year the woman commented a status update that the interrogator had on her facebook page. The woman still links from her homepage to the private blog of the police interrogator. The interrogator in turn links to her party friend and lawyer Thomas Bodström, who has a vested interest in the Assange case through his law firm.
Already sixteen months before Julian Assange came to Sweden, invited by the woman who later reported him, the police interrogator and the woman had open correspondence through the internet.
The police interrogator in April 2009 quoted a blog contribution that the Assange-woman had written about white men “who takes the right to decide what is not abusive”. The police interrogator establishes that her party friend “puts her finger on the bottom line and speaks out”.
The Assange-woman answered by leaving a personal greeting on the blog of the police interrogator:
“Hello! Thanks for the compliment. And like you say, white men must always defend the right to use abusive words. Then they of course deny that these very words are part of a system that keeps their group at the top of the social ladder”.
Sixteen months later the female police officer, as interrogator in the Assange investigation, would play an important role when the duty prosecutor ordered the arrest of the Wikileaks-founder, suspected of rape and sexual molestation.
The female police officer had just started her shift at the Klara police station in central Stockholm when the two women showed up. It was on the afternoon of August 20. Just sixteen hours later Expressens scoop of the arrest order against Julian Assange became worldwide news.
The female police soon realised that her friend and party colleague was one of the plaintiffs – yet she was still the first to interrogate one of the women in the case. At 16.21 she started the questioning of the other plaintiff, without reporting a conflict of interest that made her participation in the case challengeable.
This questioning session initially came to play a decisive role when on duty prosecutor Maria Häljebo Kjellstrand decided to order the arrest of Julian Assange.
Häljebo Kjellstrand decided that the facts reported to the police interrogation were so credible that the level of suspicion was probable cause.
Expressen has on several occasions recently had contact with the female police inspector via e-mail. Initially she said she was prepared to answer all questions. But on Wednesday she said:
- It has been decided that questions about the police handling of this matter will be answered by Ulf Göranzon (the police press officer) and questions about the ongoing investigation will be answered by the prosecutor. I cannot comment on the matter as a police officer.
Police superintendent Ulf Göranzon tells Expressen that he is not aware of the fact that the police interrogator is a friend of one of the plaintiffs.
What do you say to those who mean that the public trust for the police has been tarnished by the fact that one of the investigators is a friend of one of the plaintiffs?- Since I do not have any facts, other than rumours, I will not comment on that.
Karin Rosander, information director at the Office Of The Public Prosecutor, comments on the new findings:
- We know that rumours are going around, but the prosecutor has explicitly said that she will not give any comments in this matter while there is an ongoing process in England.