Swiss bank forces U.S. arm of whistleblower website to close
A Swiss bank has convinced a California judge to close down an online site where leakers could post documents anonymously.
Wikileaks, which began in 2007, said Monday that the giant Swiss wealth management company Bank Julius Baer & Co. Ltd. and Bank Julius Baer & Trust Co. Ltd. of the Cayman Islands had won an injunction ordering its California host to take down the site.
Wikileaks said it was not present at the hearing, and the ruling is preliminary.
It said that it had published documents allegedly relating to bank business in the Cayman Islands.
The group said it has alternative sites in Australia and Belgium and has vowed to continue to publish banking documents, saying the bank injunction is not constitutional under U.S. law.
"Our primary interests are oppressive regimes in Asia, the former Soviet bloc, Sub-Saharan Africa and the Middle East, but we also expect to be of assistance to those in the West who wish to reveal unethical behaviour in their own governments and corporations," the group has said.
The Julius Baer website said it is a wealth management organization with more than 4,000 employees and $365 billion assets under administration at the end of 2007.
Wikileaks uses the wiki designation, which means users can post and edit content, but is not related to Wikipedia.