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Posts Tagged ‘Case of Julius Bar Swiss bank

Case of the Julius Bar Swiss bank: “Inside WikiLeaks” story

Daniel Domscheit-Berg wrote in “Inside WikiLeaks”:

On January 2008, I had started working as volunteer for WikiLeaks, when the first batch of documents were leaked to us relative to a famous Swiss bank called Julius Bar. The documents sent to our mailbox contained plenty of numbers, organigrams (or flow charts of responsibilities and high level personnel), business procedures, and contracts…Internal correspondence, notes, and computation were included in the hundred of pages that Julian Assange and I had to analyze and digest.

The documents revealed hundred of rich people bypassing fiscal laws by rerouting their wealth to the Caiman Islands.  The accounts ranged from $5 million to hundred million.  The Swiss bank Julius Bar had fine-tuned its complex system of erecting screen financial societies that would secure the flux of capital.

Julian Assange and I did a few side research and on January 14, 2008, we published our report on Internet.  We had dispatched press releases to a few media.

This Tuesday at work, I glanced every 5 minutes on my portable computer to check the reactions on Google News.  We had no means to find out who consulted our site (hits) since this would contradict the anonymity principle of WikiLeaks. Julian Assange and I never called one another; we communicated by chatting on the net.

The first reaction arrived at 8:30 pm on January 15. 

The sender of the mail was a lawyer from a law firm.  The lawyer wanted the name of the leaker of the documents!  We were excited to test our security system that was fine theoretically. Thus, we asked the lawyer a few more details so that we know who is the client he was defending.  We let this lawyer presume that we had our own lawyer.  Actually, the only volunteer lawyer, Julie Turner lived in Texas and we could not get in touch with her.

I was using the name of my cat for pseudonym Daniel Schmitt: I had no inkling to letting banks detectives coming to sniff around me.   Mails started to flood us, particularly from American media and civic rights movements that rallied around our case:  Protection of sources and freedom of press, stupid.  The thematic of “alert launchers” as heroes was more developed in the USA than in Europe.

A legal  complaint was lodged against us  in California by the bank lawyers, where the domain was created.  The judge ordered the shutting down of our domain name on account that most probably, the leaker must have signed a confidential clause in his contract!

A wave of indignation irrupted around the world and journalists wanted to interview us. I spent days responding to the mails. The CBS News titled “Free speech has a number” and mentioned our IP address  WikiLeaks was propelled quicker than we imagined without the lawyer complaints.  The judge had no alternative but to reverse his decision.

We published all our correspondence with the bank’s lawyers.  Many individuals in the list of tax evaders were implicated and they tried to bribe us in order to removing their name from the list.

Julian Assange and I were the only persons writing, sending press releases, and replying to mails, though people had the impression that a large team of employees and volunteers were involved.  If the new literary analysis program was applied to our writing, people would have discovered that only two individuals were behind that job.

Daniel Domscheit-Berg divulged that WikiLeaks managed to hire only two technicians but Julian failed to secure any consistent and serious volunteers.  The server was an outdated equipment and if it failed, the entire enterprise would have gone down the drain.




June 2023

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