Talk:Wikileaks claims ‘abuse of process’ in court case that resulted in wikileaks.org being taken offline
I emailed Wikileaks and asked for a copy of their latest press release along with permission to quote it in an article (as I don't think emails can be quoted without permission). They responded by giving me permission to quote the press release and provided a copy of this press release- The following excerpt demonstrates the type of abuse of process used by Bank Julius Baer & Trust's (law firm) Lavely & Singer to bring about a hearing at which Wikileaks was not represented:
I also used this quote which DragonFire1024 obtained via email-
banking" entity currently attempting to sue Wikileaks before US Federal court Justice Jeffery White in San Francisco has released a misleading press release on, where else, but "Business Wire". Wikileaks doesn't have $500 to spend on propaganda wires, but Wikileaks has something better -- the truth, verifiable and lots of it:
Baer alleges that they couldn't negotiate with Wikileaks. This is a lie.
Wikileaks at all times responded with grace and dignity to BJBs highly irregular demands and left communication open. A full record of the correspondence is available on http://Wikileaks.be/ The last letter is from Wikileaks. BJB did not submit the correspondence to the court, although it must be absolutely central to the issues held there. We wonder why?
Wikileaks is happy to let the public decide, but the shadowy Swiss-Cayman "Bank and Trust" has been allergic to the sun from the very beginning. The first sign of its hyper-sensitivity was when its Hollywood lawyers, Lavely & Singer refused to put their demands in writing -- even email -- as requested. The second sign was when the same lawyers refused to even identify their client! Finally the lawyers refused to even state what city they would be taking their threatened action in so Wikileaks could arrange representation in that city, instead preferring to abuse process and arrange a hearing where Wikileaks was not represented. But don't take our word for it -- see submissions to the court by our then pre-litigation council Julie Turner and the correspondence between Wikileaks and the bank on http://wikileaks.be/
It is clear BJB decided to hire Hollywood lawyers Lavely & Singer who abused process and it is now paying the consequences. Wikileaks demands an apology.
Nearly all of the documents at issue are over 10 years old with the most recent document being from 2003. BJB claims in its court filings to have been aware of their release since 2003 and the Swiss media had the documents in 2005. The documents are nearly all trust arrangements setting up anonymizing shell structures. The only relevance these documents have now is that they expose who was funneling money through the Cayman Islands trusts a decade ago.
BJB stated in its Business-wire press release that "It wasn't our intention to shut down the Web site". This is a lie. The requests to the court to do just that are a matter of public record. Further, at any time, including now, BJB could have asked the court that its earlier request for an order to shutdown the site be rescinded. It has not done so. While one might be tempted to blame Hollywood lawyers run amuck, BJB continues to employ the same law-firm, which can only be an endorsement of it its ruinous behavior.
Until attacked by the bank Wikileaks took a skeptical position on the documents. BJB in attempting to shoot the messenger has onlysucceeded, spectacularly, in shooting itself.
Finally, my quote of a Wikileaks user comes from this IRC discussion. The transcript starts after the Wikileaks user had agreed for what they say to be included on Wikinews. I believe this is required due to privacy laws. I am Anon961 and souls is the wikileaks user.
<souls> well, we certainly are not happy but very much concerned and also
angry with this blind, unlawful decision
<souls> this is a bad sign for society on many levels
<souls> are you aware of our editorial response to the banks claims?
<souls> "action" by the government referring to the judge i take it?
I almost forgot this Press Release, obtained by DragonFire1024 for a previous article
WIKILEAKS.ORG DELETED AFTER EX-PARTE LEGAL ATTACK BY CAYMAN ISLANDS BANK
Mon Feb 18 00:00:00 GMT 2008
The following release has not been proofed due to time constraints.
Transparency group Wikileaks forcibly censored at ex-parte Californian hearing -- ordered to print blank pages -- 'wikileaks.org' name forcibly deleted from Californian domain registrar -- the best justice Cayman Islands money launderers can buy?
When the transparency group Wikileaks was censored in China last year, no-one was too surprised. After all, the Chinese government also censors the Paris based Reporters Sans Frontiers and New York Based Human Rights Watch. And when Wikileaks and published the secret Internet censorship lists of Thailand's military Junta, no-one was too surprised when people in that country had to go to extra lengths to read the site. But on Friday the 15th, February 2008, in the land of the brave, home of the free and a constitution which proudly states "Congress shall make no law... abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press", the power was forcibly turned off on the main Wikileaks press -- permanently:
BANK JULIUS BAER & CO. LTD, a Swiss entity; and JULIUS BAER BANK AND TRUST CO. LTD, a Cayman Island ORDER GRANTING entity, PERMANENT INJUNCTION WIKILEAKS, an entity of unknown form; WIKILEAKS.ORG, an entity of unknown form; DYNADOT, LLC, a California limited liability company; and DOES 1 through 10, inclusive,
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED:
[..] Dynadot shall immediately clear and remove all DNS hosting records for the wikileaks.org domain name and prevent the domain name from resolving to the wikileaks.org website or any other website or server other than a blank park page, until further order of this Court.
The Cayman Islands is located between Cuba and Honduras. In July 2000, the United States Department of the Treasure Financial Crimes Enforcement Network issued an advisory states stating that there were "serious deficiencies in the counter-money laundering systems of the Cayman Islands", "Cayman Islands law makes it impossible for the supervisory and regulatory authority to obtain information held by financial institutions regarding their client's identity", "Failure of financial institutions in the Cayman Islands to report suspicious transactions is not subject to penalty" and that "These deficiencies, among others, have caused the Cayman Islands to be identified by the Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering (The 'FATF') as non-cooperative in the fight against money laundering". As of 2006 the U.S. State Department listed the Cayman Islands in its money laundering "Countries of Primary Concern".
Wikileaks had previously exposed $4,500,000,000 worth of money laundering and tax evasion, including by the former president of Kenya, Daniel Arap Moi (see http://wikileaks.be/wiki/The_looting_of_Kenya_under_President_moi which became the Guardian's front page story in September 2007 and swung the Kenyan vote by 10% leading into the December 2007 election and http://wikileaks.be/wiki/A_Charter_House_of_horrors reported in the Nairobi paper The Standard and now the subject of a High Court Case in Kenya).
On Monday June 15, 1971 the New York Times published excepts of of Daniel Ellsberg's leaked "Pentagon Papers" and was injuncted the following day. The Wikileaks injunction is the equivalent of forcing the Times' printers to print blank pages and its power company to turn off the power. The supreme court found the Times censorship injunction unconstitutional some six weeks later in a 6-3 decision.
The Wikileaks.org injunction is ex-parte, engages in prior restraint and is certainly unconstitutional. It was granted on Thursday afternoon by California district court judge White, Bush appointee and former prosecutor.
The order was entirely written by Cayman Island's Bank Julius Baer lawyers and was accepted by judge White without amendment, or representations by Wikileaks or amicus. The case is over several Wikileaks articles, public commentary and documents dating prior to 2003. The documents allegedly reveal secret Julius Baer trust structures used for asset hiding, money laundering and tax evasion. The bank alleges the documents were disclosed to Wikileaks by offshore banking whistleblower and former Vice President the Cayman Island's operation, Rudolf Elmer. Unable to lawfully attack Wikileaks servers which are based in several countries, the order was served on Wikileaks's California registrar Dynadot ("the power company"). The order also enjoins every person who has heard about the order from from even linking to the documents.
Inorder to deal with Chinese censorship, Wikileaks has many backup sites such as wikileaks.be (Belgium) and wikileaks.org.au (Australia) which remain active. Wikileaks certainly never expected to be using the alternative servers to deal with censorship attacks, from, of all places, the United States.
Wikileaks states the order is unconstitutional and exceeds its jurisdiction.
Wikileaks will keep on publishing, in-fact, given the level of suppression involved in this case, Wikileaks will step up publication of documents pertaining to illegal or unethical banking practices.
Wikileaks has six pro-bono attorney's in S.F on roster to deal with a legal assault, however Wikileaks was given notice "by email" hours before the case. Wikileaks was NOT represented. Wikileaks pre-litigation California council Julie Turner attended the start of hearing in a personal capacity but was then "excused".
White signed the Cayman Islands bank censorship order without a single amendment.
The injunction claims to be permanent, although the case is only preliminary.