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Response to muriel_volestrangler (Reply #14)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 08:03 AM

27. regarding the THE SWEDISH CODE OF JUDICIAL PROCEDURE

- where can I find the provisions you refer to?

1. "once they formally charge him (at which point they can hold him without bail)"
2. "once they formally charge him ... they have to start the court case within 2 weeks"

I just read what appear to be the relevant chapters in the THE SWEDISH CODE OF JUDICIAL PROCEDURE, Chapters 19-48: http://www.regeringen.se/content/1/c4/15/40/472970fc.pdf

re 1.: Nowhere can I find any confirmation for your claim that they cannot hold him without bail before he is formally charged.

From what I CAN find, it would appear that prosecutors have the power to arrest a suspect, provided they have "reasonable suspicion" or "probable cause" whenever they deem necessary DURING and even before they initiate a preliminary investigation, especially if the suspect "does not reside in the Realm and there is a reasonable risk that he will avoid legal proceedings or a penalty by fleeing the country" (Chapter 24, DETENTION AND ARREST, Section 1, 2, 5; p. 131 f)

That is, in fact, what they already did two years ago, and what the European Arrest Warrant is based on. Pretrial detention during the preliminary investigation for the purpose of interviewing Assange.

How long can they hold him before they decide to prosecute? "Indefinitely" certainly not, but for quite a while, provided a court confirms (every two weeks) there is a flight risk.

There is no maximum period of pre-trial detention in Sweden. However, if no legal action has been taken within 14 days, a new remand hearing is required. In 2010 there were approximately 1,700 pre-trial detainees in Sweden, who made up 24% of the total prison population. http://www.fairtrials.net/documents/DetentionWithoutTrialFullReport.pdf


re 2.: Nowhere can I find confirmation for your claim that they have to start the court case within 2 weeks after being formally charged, either.

In Chapter 45, INSTITUTION OF PUBLIC PROSECUTION, Section 14 (p. 248) there are two different provisions for time limits:

... If the defendant is under arrest or in detention, the main hearing shall be held within one week from the date of the institution of the prosecution unless, as a result of a measure stated in Section 11 or 12 or another circumstance, a longer postponement is necessary.


If a travel prohibition has been imposed upon the defendant, the main hearing shall be held within one month from the date of the institution of the prosecution unless, as a result of a measure stated in Sections 11 and 12 or another circumstance, a longer postponement is necessary.


What are, other than "another circumstance", possible reasons for postponement?

Section 11 says:

The court may direct the prosecutor to complete the preliminary investigation or, if no preliminary investigation has been held, to conduct one.

and Section 12:

If required in order to assure that all evidence shall be available at the main hearing in an uninterrupted sequence, orders shall be issued without delay for obtaining expert opinions, production of written evidence, or objects for viewing or inspection, or for taking any other preparatory measure.


The court can also dismiss the case, BTW, once the prosecution is initiated by filing with the court a written application for a summons against the person to be charged:

Chapter 45, INSTITUTION OF PUBLIC PROSECUTION, Section 8:

The summons application shall be dismissed if the court finds it plain that the person initiating the prosecution is not authorized to prosecute for the offence or that the case, by reason of any other procedural impediment, cannot be heard and determined.


Not to mention the possibility of a trial in absentia, which may not be preferable for either party, but does not appear to be impossible in Sweden. Will post the respective chapters and sections, if required.

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