By Neenah Payne
Attorneys and Journalists Illegally Searched During Visits with Julian Assange Sue CIA and Michael Pompeo explains that US attorneys and US journalists who were illegally spied on in violation of the Fourth Amendment while meeting with Julian Assange in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London have launched a lawsuit against Mike Pompeo as well as the Spanish security firm UC Global. Pompeo was the CIA Director from 2017-2018 and became Trump’s Secretary of State in April 2018.
Mike Pompeo ordered to testify in Spanish court over alleged plot to kidnap Julian Assange (see video). Assange’s attorneys are including offense now in their defense of Assange! As shown in the video, the violations of due process indicate that Assange cannot receive a fair trial and the case against him should be dropped now. Pompeo has so far refused to comply with the subpoena to testify in court — as was expected.
The video also explains that Assange’s right to a fair trial was abridged by the illegal confiscation of the information on the devices of the journalists, lawyers, doctors, and others who visited him in the Ecuadorian Embassy. That confiscation was ordered by Pompeo. So, the charges against Assange should be dismissed now and the request for extradition withdrawn.
The lawsuit and press conference include Richard Roth
“London: US-based lawyers for Julian Assange are suing the CIA and former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo for allegedly covertly monitoring the WikiLeaks founder and his visitors when he was holed up in the Ecuadorian embassy in London. Assange spent seven years in the Knightsbridge embassy in an attempt to evade extradition to Sweden where he faced charges of sexual assault.
During those years he entertained guests — many of them celebrities — and also met with his lawyers and journalists. He fathered two sons with his now wife Stella, which he managed to keep secret from the rest of the world.
The extradition hearing underway in British courts has heard sensational evidence that a Spanish firm Undercover Global was hired by the CIA – which was headed by Mike Pompeo at the time – to covertly monitor Assange inside the embassy. Legal proceedings in Spanish courts against the head of that firm, David Morales, heard testimony in 2020 that Assange’s visitors unknowingly had the data on their phones copied when they were required to hand over their belongings to Morales’ staff.
At a press conference in New York on Monday, Assange’s US lawyers said the suit alleges that unbeknown to even the Ecuadorians, who granted Assange asylum, the data on their phones and other electronic devices was copied and handed over to the CIA. ‘Think of what we store in our phones and in our computers: birthdays, bank information, dates of birth. All of this was recorded then given over to the Central Intelligence Agency,’ attorney Robert Boyle claimed to journalists. ‘The violations … were particularly egregious.’
Assange’s lawyers argue that more than 100 US citizens, including journalists who visited Assange during his years in the embassy, had their constitutional rights violated. ‘It’s very outrageous conduct,’ said Richard Roth, whose firm Roth Law Firm is representing the group that brought the lawsuit, which was filed in the United States southern district of New York’s District Court.
The plaintiffs are US attorneys Margaret Ratner Kunstler, Deborah Hrbek, German-based US journalist John Goetz and the UK-based American journalist Charles Glass. Roth said the suit was being brought against the CIA, Pompeo, Undercover Global and its boss David Morales under the fourth amendment which he said applied to US citizens regardless of which country they were in at that time. The fourth amendment protects citizens against unreasonable searches and seizures carried out by the government.
Roth said they were suing potential presidential contender Pompeo as a personal citizen, citing a precedent that allows for lawsuits to be brought against former directors of the CIA in their personal capacity. He predicted the case would take about 12 months.
Assange is being held in HM Belmarsh Prison where he is appealing his extradition to the United States to face charges under the Espionage Act relating to the theft and publication of hundreds of thousands of secret cables. Critics of Assange’s incarceration, including Labor MPs in the Australian government, say that an Australian citizen should not be extradited from a third country to another third country.
There has been separate and subsequent reporting by YahooNews! claiming that the Trump administration floated the idea of killing and kidnapping Assange. However, the suit focuses only on the spying carried out against US citizens who visited Assange in the embassy.”
“Donald Trump’s former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has been ordered to appear in a Spanish court to explain a possible U.S. government plot to kidnap and assassinate WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, ABC Spain reports, citing legal sources close to the case. Yahoo News broke the news of the alleged 2017 plot last September, reporting that Trump’s then-CIA Director Pompeo wanted revenge after WikiLeaks published a massive trove of sensitive CIA hacking tools. ‘They were seeing blood,’ an ex-Trump national security official told Yahoo.
Separately, Spain’s National Court has been probing a Spanish security firm that may have spied on Assange for the CIA while providing security for the Ecuadorean Embassy in London. National High Court Judge Santiago Pedraz agreed to summon Pompeo and former U.S. counterintelligence official William Evanina as witnesses to explain whether a plot was drawn up. They must appear in June and can testify via videoconference. Pompeo has not yet commented on the ruling.”
Former CIA director Mike Pompeo, who could not stop thinking about how to kill Assange | Photo by Gage Skidmore
“There were no criminal prosecutions for anyone in the Central Intelligence Agency when they operated a torture program. The White House under President Barack Obama fully embraced a drone program that involved targeted assassinations.
Now, we learn that the CIA redefined WikiLeaks as a ‘hostile entity’ and sought to label WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange as an ‘information broker’ to justify aggressive actions intended to disrupt journalism. They even had plans to kill him. The latest revelations around Assange are exactly why so many advocates did not think it was acceptable for the Obama administration to move forward and not look backward.
For Yahoo! News, journalist Michael Isikoff, along with help from Zach Dorfman and Sean D. Naylor, reported on ‘secret war plans’ against Assange that involved proposals for kidnapping and assassination. CIA director Mike Pompeo became obsessed with Assange and WikiLeaks after the publication of ‘Vault 7’ materials. He sought revenge and redefined the media organization as a ‘hostile entity.’ (His successor, Gina Haspel, shared his thirst for vengeance.)
On April 13, 2017, at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), a think tank in Washington, D.C., Pompeo delivered his first speech as CIA director. He declared, ‘WikiLeaks walks like a hostile intelligence service and talks like a hostile intelligence service and has encouraged its followers to find jobs at the CIA in order to obtain intelligence.’
“It directed Chelsea Manning in her theft of specific secret information. And it overwhelmingly focuses on the United States while seeking support from anti-democratic countries and organizations. It’s time to call out WikiLeaks for what it really is, a non-state hostile intelligence service often abetted by state actors like Russia.”
Pompeo promoted a conspiracy theory riddled with fabrications, which became the narrative for the initial indictment against Assange released two years later.
After WikiLeaks helped Snowden leave Hong Kong and WikiLeaks published emails from the Clinton campaign, the CIA believed WikiLeaks staff and individuals affiliated with WikiLeaks were valid targets. They could hack their personal devices ‘from afar.’
The agency could also paralyze WikiLeaks’ ‘digital infrastructure,’ disrupt their communications, provoke ‘internal disputes within the organization by planting damaging information,’ and steal ‘WikiLeaks members’ electronic devices.’ (Note: There are no ‘members’ of WikiLeaks.)
Plans escalated as Pompeo proposed kidnapping Assange in the summer of 2017. He talked about putting Assange on a rendition flight. They considered breaking into the embassy, dragging him out, and bringing him to where the CIA wanted.
‘Agency executives requested and received “sketches” of plans for killing Assange and other Europe-based WikiLeaks members who had access to Vault 7 materials, said a former intelligence official. There were discussions “on whether killing Assange was possible and whether it was legal,” the former official said,’ the Yahoo! News further revealed.
Around this same time, the CIA developed some kind of an arrangement, where Undercover Global, a Spanish firm in charge of security at the Ecuador embassy in London, rigged microphones and cameras. They provided agents with audio recordings and video footage of Assange, his legal team, and journalists and other guests who visited him.
The CIA backed Ecuador President Lenin Moreno and his administration in their campaign to pressure Assange to leave the embassy. Additionally, the Justice Department was reportedly fearful of the CIA’s plans to kidnap or even kill WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. But rather than go to Congress or leak certain details to the press, the Justice Department decided it was best to indict Assange so the CIA would no longer be able to mount operations in the shadows.
Justice Department prosecutors disregarded the conclusions of lawyers under Attorney General Eric Holder that there was a ‘New York Times problem’ and Assange could not be prosecuted under the Espionage Act without exposing editors of newspapers that published WikiLeaks documents to potential charges. It is as perverse as any assassination fantasy that Pompeo had.
The political prosecution is built on a moral rot at the core of the U.S. national security establishment and politicians who have sold their souls to these institutions. The CIA spied on the Ecuador embassy, collected legally-privileged conversations among attorneys, and broke into the personal devices of guests visiting Assange. The FBI worked with an informant named Siggi Thordarson, a serial liar and sociopath who embezzled funds from the WikiLeaks store and sexually preyed on underage boys. The FBI seized Assange’s personal archive, confidential medical data, and legally privileged materials from the embassy following his arrest.
And now we know the CIA was out for revenge and have key details about how the agency plotted to assassinate a publisher. Because there are no meaningful consequences for crossing any boundaries.”
“Mike Pompeo, former Secretary of State under President Donald Trump, has been summoned by a Spanish court to explain an alleged US government plot to assassinate WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, according to ABC Spain.
The alleged plot was first revealed by Yahoo News in September, which reported that senior CIA and Trump administration officials discussed possibly kidnapping or killing Assange after being angered by Wikileaks’ publication of sensitive CIA hacking tools. The discussions took place ‘at the highest levels’ of the Trump administration, a former senior counterintelligence official told the outlet, with officials even requesting ‘sketches’ or ‘options’ for how to assassinate Assange.”
Press Conference August 15
Julian Assange’s Campaign: Livestream August 15 (11 AM EDT) linked to the video below with Wikileaks Editor in Chief Kristinn Hrafnsson, Julian’s attorney Jennifer Robison, and Joseph Farrel. Hrafnsson said the hearing scheduled for August 15 was postponed until August 22 because one of the lawyers for the prosecution was diagnosed with symptoms of possibly COVID. The hearing may be delayed again.
For more information, see: https://assangedefense.org/
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