One of Julian Assange’s attorneys tells Salon that the possibility that a secret grand jury is meeting in Virginia to consider charges against the WikiLeaks founder is “purely speculation” that has not been substantiated by his legal team.
“We haven’t heard anything specific. It’s only rumors,” said Attorney Jennifer Robinson of the London firm Finers Stephens Innocent. ”We do not have any concrete information about that.”
Mark Stephens, an attorney at the same firm and another member of Assange’s legal team, told Al Jazeera over the weekend: “We have heard from Swedish authorities there has been a secretly empaneled grand jury in Alexandria.”
But Robinson’s comments today make it clear that Assange’s legal team has not been able to confirm the existence of a grand jury. If one has been empaneled, it would mark an escalation in the Obama administration’s war on WikiLeaks.
The Justice Department has so far not publicly come up with a convincing theory of a law broken by Assange in the case — though various Obama officials have asserted that WikiLeaks has committed a crime. Robinson stressed that ”there are no grounds on which to prosecute him” and that ”any prosecution of him would be clearly unconstitutional.”
Assange was granted bail today, but Swedish prosecutors pursuing him in an alleged sex crime case are appealing.