Summary of the Supreme Court decision

by Eva Blum-Dumontet

Today, May 30th 2012, the Supreme Court rejected the appeal opposing Julian Assange’s extradition but there is still hope the case will be reopened.

His solicitor, Dinah Rose QC had argued in February that the European arrest warrant was invalid, since Marianne Ny, who had filed the EAW, could not be considered a legitimate judicial authority.

With a majority of 5-2, the court rejected the claim. However, Dinah Rose stood to ask for an extra 14 days to request a reopening of the case at the Supreme Court. Reopening a case once a decision has already been ruled is very unusual in Britain and it is certainly a good sign that the court considered the request “reasonable enough.”

The Guardian, interviewed Julian Assange’s attorney Gareth Pierce, who explained Ms Rose’s decision:

Ms Rose has indicated that she may make an application to reopen the court’s decision.  Ms Rose suggested that the majority of the court appear to have based their decision on the interpretation of the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties, on which no argument was heard and no opportunity of making submission was given.

The Supreme Court has granted Ms Rose fourteen days to make such an application. If she decides to do so, the justices will then decide whether to reopen the appeal and accept further submissions (either verbally through a further hearing, or on paper) on the matter.

While some of Assange’s supporters, such as John Pilger, consider the court has to be taken to be the European court of human rights; his legal team is for now more measured.

During his last public appearance Julian Assange had appeared wearing a black Anonymous mask to get the world used to not seeing him publicly anymore. Today he did not come to court.

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