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16 July 2012, 01:41 (10 months ago)
Pirate Bay Founder Submits Emotional Plea for Pardon
After being convicted for his role in operating The Pirate Bay, site co-founder Peter Sunde should soon serve eight month jail sentence in a Swedish prison. Serving this sentence would be a disgrace to the justice system and a personal disaster, says Sunde, who submitted an emotional plea for pardon to the Swedish authorities this week.
After his sentence was made final earlier this year, Pirate Bay co-founder Peter Sunde was due to go prison early May.
However, due to various delays, he has yet to be committed to confinement.
This week in a final attempt to maintain his freedom, Sunde asked for a pardon. According to his lawyer, Sunde is suffering from serious mental health problems and being sent to prison would only worsen them.
It is further being reported that the head of the company where Sunde works – believed to be micro-payment company Flattr – has informed the court that if Sunde is imprisoned as planned, he will lose his job with the company.
Of most impact to those who have been following the Pirate Bay case, Sunde wrote the plea himself. The full 4000 word letter was published earlier this week on Sunde’s blog and has been translated to English by Rick Falkvinge.
“I ask pardon for a judicial system that has been steamrolled over by lobbyism and ignorance. But ultimately, I ask pardon for our future culture and communication. My case has significant impact on these,” Sunde starts his plea.
What follows is Sunde’s view on the controversial case – how he got involved in The Pirate Bay and how he was dragged into the criminal investigation and subsequently punished for crimes that never occurred.
Many of the issues mentioned by the former Pirate Bay spokesperson have been covered on TorrentFreak before, but when they are put together it makes all the more impact. According to Sunde Hollywood went to extreme lengths to make an example out of him, while abusing the Swedish legal system.
While he understands that there’s a slim chance of getting what he wants, he ends the plea with a request for clemency.
“I know that I’m at a point where I have less than a tenth of a percent’s chance of escaping punishment. Not having to go to jail for crimes I didn’t commit. Crimes that weren’t even committed in the first place. Crimes that surely aren’t even crimes to begin with, if they had been committed, and if they had been committed, hadn’t been so by me. It’s a bizarre situation with my distance to any real criminal liability,” Sunde writes.
Sunde’s determinedness to stand up for his ideals of free sharing and culture have left emotional scars, but also bankrupted him.
“And once I’m out of jail, where I’m certainly going to become increasingly bitter over the situation, I have a debt of 100 million Swedish Kroner (11 million euro). Money in fantasy numbers, supposed to ‘compensate’ for aiding and abetting the assistance of a theoretically possible crime I’m supposed to have done by doing things that didn’t happen.”
“An economic debt to some of the world’s richest corporations. A debt that practically means I don’t have a future in Sweden as a country, if I want to live off of anything other than breadcrumbs or the goodwill of my friends. This debt is equivalent to exile, to deportation. I will need to become an economic refugee from Sweden,” Sunde adds.
The Pirate Bay co-founder ends by noting that while his conviction may please Hollywood, it goes against the will of the population. A population where millions are active users of The Pirate Bay. The pardon is also for them, according to Sunde.
“This bizarre situation is one that authorities in Sweden close their eyes to. It is an insult to everything the judicial system is supposed to represent. It is a shame for the entire population. A population that doesn’t even share the opinions behind the laws I’m convicted of breaking. And it’s these things that I ask that all of us be pardoned from,” Sunde writes.
“They lost faith in the justice system with all the bias, all the obvious corruption, the unconstitutional orders across branches of government that was never investigated, all the ugly tactics that have been used to satisfy a trading partner high on its own power. Sweden’s judicial system has sold out individuals. That is not supposed to happen in a democracy.”
“Grant the people of Sweden pardon from this corruption,” Sunde concludes.
16 July 2012, 02:00 (10 months ago)
I signed, although it felt a bit weird to send all my personal information to people who obviously despise pirates.
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