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Claes Borgström’s Cover Letter

The following is the cover letter for the invoice of Claes Borgström, sent to the Stockholm District Court, for services rendered for Anna Ardin.

Stockholm 2013-03-21 Stockholm District Court
Department 1
Box 8307
10420 Stockholm

Case B 22885-10, Unit 11: City prosecution office ./. Julian Assange

Please find attached my invoice for my assignment as plaintiff counsel for Complainant A.

For the court to have a good understanding of the reasonableness of my request for compensation, there’s cause to leave a few comments on the type of assignment I was given.

On 31 September 2010, prosecution director Marianne Ny and chief prosecutor Magnus Bolin at the Development Centre in Gothenburg decided to reopen complaint K246336-10 (Complainant A) and expand complaint K246314-10 (Complainant B).

Already in my application of 2010-08-24 to be appointed plaintiff counsel, I pointed out that the complainants would be in need of representation in their contacts with the police and prosecutors as well as with the media.

My main work in this case has of course been the customary tasks for a plaintiff counsel, but to a much greater degree than usual. Complainant A has been interrogated on several occasions more than customary. The preliminary investigation has been extended and made further complicated by the fact that the suspect Julian Assange left Sweden, whereupon British courts ruled on the request from the Swedish prosecution authority for his extradition to Sweden in accordance with the European Arrest Warrant. It’s been part of my assignment to continually inform the complainant of applicable legislation and the status of the judicial process in England. As the district court knows, Assange sought political asylum in Ecuador at the end of the summer of 2012. He remains ever since at the Ecuadorean embassy in London. This circumstance makes the situation more complex for the complainant and has demanded a number of contacts with her on my part.

I’ve had continual contact with prosecution director Marianne Ny and with investigator Mats Gehlin to obtain information about developments in the case, information I’ve then reviewed for the complainant. In all other circumstance, I refer to the work description on my invoice.

As I explained in my letter 2013-03-07 to the district court, it’s been impossible to avoid contact with the media. But it should be emphasised that it’s been of vital importance for the complainant that the plaintiff counsel has repeatedly contributed to debunking false rumours which, amongst other things, have intimated that the complaint filed was disingenuous, that the complainant laid out a honey trap for Assange, that the purpose was to harm the WikiLeaks organisation, that she worked with the CIA, and so forth.

A public defender or plaintiff counsel will normally have limited contact with the media, and when the occasion arises, it’s not ordinarily seen as something to be compensated within the framework of the assignment. The case in question however is unique as regards the attention of the media and the damage done to the complainant by the resulting publicity. One can establish without exaggeration that media from all over the world have continually sought me for comments on the latest developments in the case. They’ve repeatedly asked questions about, amongst other things, the personal responsibility of the complainant for what happened, the current situation, and so forth. Many journalists used the presumption that the complainants deliberately defamed the suspect to, in one way or another, achieve personal gain. It has been necessary to challenge these claims.

In the comments to The Law for Plaintiff Counsel § 3 it is stated, amongst other things, that ‘the task of the plaintiff counsel is to mitigate the hardships in connection with the investigation of the crime and during the trial’. In The Plaintiff Counsel, Active Support in the Judicial Process (SOU 2007:6) the study expresses (Conclusion, chapter 9, page 23) as its opinion that ‘the duties of plaintiff counsel are bound to the needs of the complainant both within and outside the judicial process’.

As is explained in my invoice, I estimate my time for contact with the media to be at least 80 hours. Considering what’s been mentioned above, I believe that in any case half of that time should be compensated within the framework for my assignment as plaintiff counsel. In my invoice for Complainant A I have therefore cited 20 hours work in connection with media contacts.

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Posts in my invoice regarding only work, time wasted, and expenses for Complainant A have been marked by denoting ‘Complainant A’. The time spent was 48 hours.

Remaining posts regard both Complainant A and Complainant B. The time spent was 44 hours and half of this, 22 hours, is taken up in the invoice. The remaining half will be invoiced for Complainant B.

I have not claimed compensation for work with my application to the Development Centre in Gothenburg to reopen the preliminary investigation or for related tasks. As is customary, such work is not considered for compensation within the framework for the appointment of plaintiff counsel (see amongst other sources Decision of High Court for West Sweden 2010-05-10 for case Ö 1671, and the decision of Svea High Court, department 8, 2011-08-25 for case Ö 6463-11).

2 Comments

  1. Khalin wrote:

    Free Assange! The legal allegations against him are not serving anybody justice. The U.S.’s war crimes far exceed Assange’s release of information to the public. We need sources like wiki leaks to to shine brights lights on our tyrannical governments, corrupt financial institutions, misleading media outlets, and big business tycoons. The U.S. and the U.K governments are acting in a deffencive manner similar to a child when they’ve been told they have behaved poorly. Lets evaluate our behaviour and strive to find a more mature and peaceful representation for the human species. Not devolve ourselves to defensive children lacking humility, understanding, maturity, and common sense.

    With love and respect. <3

    Khalin

    Friday, March 29, 2013 at 8:46 pm | Permalink
  2. judy Rubusj wrote:

    Really – what’s wrong with the people in a Democracy knowing what their government is doing,in their name????

    Saturday, March 30, 2013 at 5:14 am | Permalink