While the Australian government bays for the crucifixion of its citizen Julian Assange and Wikileaks, it seems that local coppers think that neither have done anything wrong.
Australia has a long tradition of doing what the US tells it to ever since it let a boat load of French agents escape after the blowing up of the Rainbow Warrior in New Zealand. Kiwi PM David Lange’s government had angered the US by refusing to let nuclear weapons into the country so when the French agents got to Australia they were nodded on by the Aussie government.
Lately, Aussie Prime Minister Julia Gillard has been banging on that the actions of Wikileaks and Assange is “illegal” – as recently as two weeks ago. There were mutterings that Australia might have him extradited over the leaking of official United States government documents. All designed to re-affirm how much Australia loves the USA.
However, the Australian Federal Police said this is unlikely because of a quaint legal tradition in Oz, which requires someone to have broken the law before they are arrested.
A statement released by the federal police said that having gone through the evidence, Assange and Wikileaks have not broken any law where Australia would have jurisdiction.
Gillard said that she still thinks the leaks are irresponsible, but said she will not be changing the law.
Attorney-General Robert McClelland said coppers had noted a number of offences that could be applied in the circumstances, depending on whether all elements of the offence could be proven.
But federal police had not identified any criminal offences where Australia has jurisdiction and as a result have not commenced an investigation, he said.
The documents published to date are classified by the United States. The primary jurisdiction for any investigation into the matter remains the United States, he said.