Icelandic Court Orders Valitor (Formerly VISA) to Pay WikiLeaks $10 Million Over 2011 Banking Blockade

The Icelandic court has ordered Valitor, formerly VISA Iceland, to pay WikiLeaks $10 million in damages over the 2011 banking blockade.

Valitor had been ordered to process card payments for WikiLeaks in 2013 by the same court, and was told they would face daily penalties if they refused to comply.

By not reinstating services, the company was fined $204,900 per month or $2,494,604 per year for continuing the blockade.

On Wednesday, Icelandic media reported that the company has now been ordered to pay up.

Valitor has stated that they are likely to appeal, according to WikiLeaks.

WikiLeaks had launched a case against Valitor in Reykjavik back in June of 2012 over the unlawful suspension of financial services against Wikileaks.

Ten days after WikiLeaks published Cablegate, they were blockaded by Bank of America, VISA, MasterCard, PayPal and Western Union. The political effort to defund the organization lead to a wave of hacks and cyber attacks against the companies by transparency activists.

“The blockade is outside of any accountable, public process. It is without democratic oversight or transparency. The US government itself found that there were no lawful grounds to add WikiLeaks to a US financial blockade. But the blockade of WikiLeaks by politicized US finance companies continues regardless,” WikiLeaks said in a statement at the time.

The financial blockades were condemned by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, the UN Special Rapporteur on the Promotion and Protection the Right to Freedom of Opinion and Expression and the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression.


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