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Internet blogs were burning up during the weekend, after a federal judge in San Francisco temporarily enjoined a Web site known for posting a wide array of confidential documents that allege skullduggery by companies and governments around the world. A Swiss bank, Julius Baer, asked the court to order removal of several hundred documents posted on Wikileaks.org that purport to be about its off-shore activities. The Wikileaks Web site has been online for a year and allows whistleblowers to anonymously post government and corporate documents. It was taken off-line in the U.S. as a result of the order by U.S. District Judge Jeffrey White in San Francisco. But even with the injunction in place against Web domain provider Dynadot, some people quickly posted links directly to the Wikileak’s computer IP address allowing anyone to continue to view the website. Said an Internet poster on the Digg website, that aggregates links to news stories, of the Wikileak IP address, “They can try, but the only true way to censor the Internet is to shut the whole thing down.” The Digg site and others with comments about the court ruling buzzed with hundreds of email comments about the order. Additional versions of the Wikileaks pages could still be accessed early in the week at sites hosted in Belgium an India. Wikileaks was not represented at the restraining order hearing Friday. But an email response it posted on its site accused the attorney for Julius Baer bank back on Jan. 17 with failing to disclose his client’s name or the claims being asserted. The Julius Baer attorney’s email to Wikileaks, also posted by the website, alleged to be from a lawyer identified as Evan Spiegel of Lavely & Singer in Los Angeles, said the site, “promotes, encourages and facilities the publication and distribution of stolen, illegally and/or tortiously obtained corporation records.” Spiegel did not return a call for comment. Wikileaks’ California attorney, identified as Julie Turner, did not return a call for comment. White set Feb. 29 for a hearing on the bank’s request for a preliminary injunction. The case is reminiscent of the 2001 suit by Yahoo Inc. challenging a French government order to block online auctioning of Nazi memorabilia by Yahoo in France, where such sales are illegal. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in 2006 that American courts did not have jurisdiction to interfere with the French law, despite Yahoo’s claim of First Amendment violations, Yahoo Inc. v. La Ligue Contre Le Racisme, 433 F.3d 1199 (2006).

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