Code, etc.

Who’s who in the Assange sex case? (part two)

Marianne Ny has worked as a prosecutor with the Swedish Prosecution Authority since 1985. Since 2007 she is Deputy Directory of the Prosecution Development Centre in Gothenburg. The Gothenburg centre is one of three centres in Sweden tasked with study and innovation in different legal areas. She specializes in cases of child sex abuse and violence against women.

Erika Leijnefors is a Swedish prosecutor assisting Marianne Ny. She has had contact with Assange’s Swedish counsel, Björn Hurtig, who was trying to arrange a meeting between Assange and the police. According to Hurtig, this meeting did not take place Ny would not commit to it.

Maria Häljebo Kjellstrand was the prosecutor on duty when the Swedish Prosecution authority received a call from the police about accusations made to them by Anna Ardin and Sophia Wilen, the two women at the centre of the case. Kjellstrand’s husband, Per Kjellstrand, works in the office of the Swedish Minister for Justice Beatrice Ask. Ms Kjellstrand immediately issued an arrest warrant based on the information she received. She later received a phone call from the Swedish tabloid Expressen who had somehow got wind of the situation. It is not known at present how Expressen found out about the initial arrest warrant, but Swedish civil rights group Rättssäkerhetsorganisationen has filed a suit against Kjellstrand based on Swedish laws that confer a right to secrecy on the subject of an arrest warrant.

Eva Finne is a Chief Prosecutor with the Swedish Prosecution Authority. In late August, she reviewed and retracted the arrest warrant for Assange on the grounds that there was no evidence to back up the rape allegations. In a statement issued at the time, she said that she still intended to investigate the lesser charge of molestations. On the first of September, the case was reopened by Marianne Ny, Finne’s superior.

Anna Ardin is a a feminist and political activist. In her thirties, she is one of the women alleging sexual misconduct against Julian Assange. She previously worked as a gender equity officer at Uppsala University before taking a job as press officer with the Brotherhood, a Christian group within the Social Democratic Party. There has been speculation about her past involvement in a CIA-funded anti-Castro group.

Sophia Wilen is a photographer and an employee of the Enkoping town council. She is also associated with the “Brotherhood”, a group affiliated with the Swedish Social Democratic party, having volunteered to help out at an event at which Assange was speaking. She met Assange after this event and the events that ensued form the basis for the allegations against him.

James D. Catlin is a Melbourne barrister who represented Julian Assange in October. He has been a vocal critic of the charges against him, the Swedish laws on rape, and the irregularities in the prosecution of the case.—Broderskapsrorelsen/Var-politik-/,01.shtml,01.shtml


Using OAuth with Python Twitter Tools

I have been writing a Twitter client in Python based on Mike Verdone’s Python Twitter Tools. It’s an elegant and concise library that allows access to all the useful parts of the Twitter API from inside a Python application. Unfortunately, the documentation is bad to non-existent.

After much fiddling I figured out how to use it for OAuth authentication. I’m sharing it here to save the next person the trouble. The first step if of course to import the twitter module. I like to import the oauth_dance portion of it too. This is needed to get the token key and token secret that give the application access to your Twitter account.

import twitter

import twitter.oauth_dance

You will need the consumer key and consumer secret, which you can get by registering your application with Twitter. Once you have done that just stick them in variables. As we don’t yet have the token key or secret, we pass empty strings for them. We then use parse_oauth_tokens in oauth_dance to get the token key and token secret and assign them to variables.

app_name = "appnamehere"

key = "blahblahblahblah"

secret = "putrealdatahere"

twitterConnect = twitter.Twitter(auth=twitter.oauth.OAuth('', '', key, secret), format='')

oauth_token, oauth_token_secret = twitter.oauth_dance.parse_oauth_tokens(twitterConnect.oauth.request_token())

Now we open a web browser and point it at an URL based on the value in oauth_token. The user is asked to enter their login details and confirm that they want to allow the application to access their Twitter account. Then the user is given a PIN that we use in the next stage to complete the OAuth process.

import webbrowser

oauth_url = ('' + oauth_token)

Because my application is based on Python and Qt, I get the PIN from a text field in a dialog box. It is an instance of Qt’s QLineEdit. It doesn’t matter how you do it as long as you get the PIN into a string that can be passed to the twitterConnect object.

oauth_verifier = lineEdit.text()

twitterConnect = twitter.Twitter(auth=twitter.oauth.OAuth(oauth_token, oauth_token_secret, key, secret), format='')

oauth_token, oauth_token_secret = twitter.oauth_dance.parse_oauth_tokens(twitterConnect.oauth.access_token(oauth_verifier=oauth_verifier))

That completes the process. Now you can write the OAuth token key and token secret to a configuration file and use them for authentication in the future.

Who’s who in the Assange sex case? (part one)

This article is the first in a two part series about the people involved in the legal proceedings surrounding allegations of sexual misconduct against Julian Assange. The aim of the article is to provide a jumping-off point for people unfamiliar with the story, so they can get informed.

Here are brief bios of some of the participants:

Mark Stephens is a solicitor representing Julian Assange. The 48 year old has been practicing the law since being admitted as a Solicitor of the Supreme Court in England and Wales in July 1982. He is a partner in the law firm Finers Stephens Innocent with a record of representing high profile clients such as Salman Rushdie. He is an expert in the fields of libel and copyright law.

Geoffrey Robertson, QC is an Australian human rights and media lawyer and author. Born in 1946, he studied law at Sydney University before coming to the UK to study at Oxford. Since being admitted as a barrister in 1973, he has been involved in many significant cases, representing clients such as the Wall Street Journal and the Dow Jones. He was made Queen’s Counsel in 1988. His academic record includes visiting professorships and the University of Warwick and the University of New South Wales. He is currently visiting professor in human rights law at Queen Mary College, University of London.

Jennifer Robinson is a solicitor with the human rights, media and international litigation group at Finers Stephens Innocent. She qualified as a solicitor in Australia and came to the UK to study at Oxford on a Rhodes scholarship. In 2008 she was named by the UK Attorney-General as a National Pro Bono Hero for her international advisory work on international law and human rights. At one point she worked with Geoffrey Robinson, QC.

Leif Silbersky is a well-known Swedish lawyer. Born in 1938, he has been involved in some extremely controversial cases. He represented Assange until September when Assange took exception to what he saw as Silbersky’s lack of engagement with the case and replaced him with Bjorn Hurtig.

Bjorn Hurtig is a criminal defence lawyer with Försvarsadvokaterna Stockholm. He was appointed by Assange in September after Leif Silbersky was removed from the case.

John Jones is a solicitor representing Julian Assange. He has been practising the law since 1992, after completing a PPE at Oxford. He is a specialist in the law of extradition. He is a colleague of Geoffrey Robertson, QC, at Doughty Street Chambers.

Gemma Lindfield is a London barrister with legal practice 7 Bedford Row. She has acted as a Senior Crown Prosecutor and is the Swedish prosecution’s proxy in the Assange case. Her profile on the 7 Bedford Row website underlines her expertise in “drafting extradition requests and European arrest warrants.”

Howard Riddle is a Senior District Judge for the City of Westminster. On the 7th of December he denied bail to Julian Assange and ordered that he be remanded in custody until the 14th of December.

Claes Borgström is the lawyer representing the two women with whom Julian Assange had sexual relations on his trip to Sweden in August of this year. Born in 1944, he has been practicing the law since 1974. From 2000 he worked as the Equal Opportunities Ombudsman for the Swedish government. He left this post in 2007 and returned to the practising the law. Since 2008 he is the Swedish Social Democratic Party’s spokesperson on gender equality issues. sweden/