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Pirate Bay judge faces conflict of interest allegation

Written by Rich Fiscus (Google+) @ 23 Apr 2009 13:31 User comments (20)

Pirate Bay judge faces conflict of interest allegation The judge who found four Swedish men guilty of making files available for copyright infringement in the Pirate Bay trial is coming under fire for an alleged conflict of interest. It seems he's a member of some groups whose purpose is to strengthen intellectual property protections.
Judge Thomas Norström is a member of the Swedish Association for the Protection of Industrial Property and the Swedish Copyright Association. He told Swedish public radio "I did not judge that I had any conflict of interest in this case."

He reportedly claimed his participation in these groups in order to stay abreast of the legal issues surrounding copyright. However, his status as a board member of one group, in which all three entertainent industry who participated in the prosecution are members, seems to at least give the appearance of impropriety.

The Pirate Bay’s defense attorney, Peter Althin, indicated he would seek a new trial over the matter. An appeal of the verdict was filed earlier this week, before this revelation became public.

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20 user comments

123.4.2009 13:56

Silly me - I thought Sweden was a country not a joke shop - however it doesn't matter whether he was a board member or not ( although it certainly helps TPB case ) - the fact is that ALL judges would be prejudicial against TPB and side with the authorities/prosecution in order to protect their own privileged positions and out of fear of arousing the authorities and governments' wrath.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 23 Apr 2009 @ 13:56

223.4.2009 14:35

With this case also being trail by media the example has to be set as it were.Hi profile and well "reported" around the world TPB just becomes the "example" to warn others.Yet in Britain an MP can have two houses,buy porn and claim it all on expenses.At the end of the day corruption and bull****.

323.4.2009 15:35

This whole court case has been a joke. And this clown of a judge didn't think it was necessary to mention his connection with certain copyright groups might conflict with the case?

I say just throw the case out due to sheer stupidity and stop wasting everyone's time.

423.4.2009 16:41

Originally posted by wiimatrix:
Yet in Britain an MP can have two houses,buy porn and claim it all on expenses..
you need to read your newspapers more carefully - the porn reference was to a soft porn adult feature on a cable channel watched by the husband of a female MP while she was away on business

It was added to the normal monthly TV bill they paid and the mistake had been spotted and rectified and the amount repaid before the story even hit the press.

not exactly the same as "MP buying porn and claiming it all on expenses" is it ?

You sound about as objective as the judge in TPB trial.

523.4.2009 18:15

I agree with the other posters. I hope that Sweden will make the extra effort to give The Pirate Bay a fair trial with as little controversy as possible. It is ludicrous this judge didn't come out prior to this trial to mention his involvement with these other organizations. As much as he and the government deny it had any bearing on the outcome, this ruling is completely void. Check out this video here for some more info about the controversy.

623.4.2009 18:19

to be fair who honestly didnt see this coming

723.4.2009 19:05

How the hell was this not caught beforehand? Or did piratebay actually use this to their advantage so that they can move up to a higher court system without any trouble?

823.4.2009 20:04

Now this is actually news worthy. I can't believe this. If they don't get a new trial theirs a huge injustice occuring in Sweden and the entire world is seeing it play out. I would be more scared than mad if they didn't get one. Scared just because of what it would mean the music industy's power is actually worth...a hell of a lot.

923.4.2009 21:52
zax808
Inactive

Originally posted by canuckerz:
How the hell was this not caught beforehand? Or did piratebay actually use this to their advantage so that they can move up to a higher court system without any trouble?
Nailed it on the head, i think thats exactly what they are doing!

1024.4.2009 7:46

This is the best news that I heard all day.

Summary of events:
The music industry sends their pack of lawyers at TPB. TPB takes one for the team. TPB then shoots down the judge. Gets a new trial. Rinse and repeat.

I wonder how much money the music industry is willing to waste on their fancy lawyers and paid off judges.

At the very least, I hope we can actually get a verdict from an unbiased judge.

1124.4.2009 10:44

Does make you wounder how much he is paid to be on the board of directors, you know expenses and all, im sure he isnt having to pay to be a member, more like its the other way round.

SOUNDS MORE LIKE A LEGAL WAY TO PAY BACK HANDERS.

GO TPB... RETRIAL RETRIAL RETRIAL

1224.4.2009 14:10

I'm not sure how thry do it in weden but in the USA, the apperance of impropriety (although I think this is more like a direct conflict of interest) would result in a new trial only if the evidence was iffy. In other words if the prosecutor had more than enough evidence no retrial will be ordered even with the conflict. On the other hand if there was evidence included or excluded by the judge that might have changed the verdict then the conflict should result in a retrial. Also if the outcome wasn't a slam dunk for the prosecution where the decision is totally with the judge (there being no jury) then any doubt should resuilt in a retrial with another judge. This issue only relates to factual issues since any appellate court will render its own determination on the legal issues and will reverse if it disagrees with the trial court's application of the law to the case. I am certainly hoping for the original verdict being thrown out.

1324.4.2009 17:39

Originally posted by xempler:
This whole court case has been a joke. And this clown of a judge didn't think it was necessary to mention his connection with certain copyright groups might conflict with the case?

I say just throw the case out due to sheer stupidity and stop wasting everyone's time.
It is never a waste of time protecting our hard fought and hard won freedoms
"The evils of tyranny are rarely seen, but by him who resists it."
John Hay, 1872

1424.4.2009 18:00

Originally posted by maryjayne:
This is the best news that I heard all day.

Summary of events:
The music industry sends their pack of lawyers at TPB. TPB takes one for the team. TPB then shoots down the judge. Gets a new trial. Rinse and repeat.

I wonder how much money the music industry is willing to waste on their fancy lawyers and paid off judges.

At the very least, I hope we can actually get a verdict from an unbiased judge.

Unbiased judge? Isn't that a conflict in terms.
Law: 1.) ground rules with fines and jail time, 2.) the best ground rules money can buy.

1525.4.2009 22:53
lubricant
Inactive

Originally posted by domie:
Silly me - I thought Sweden was a country not a joke shop - however it doesn't matter whether he was a board member or not ( although it certainly helps TPB case ) - the fact is that ALL judges would be prejudicial against TPB and side with the authorities/prosecution in order to protect their own privileged positions and out of fear of arousing the authorities and governments' wrath.
not sure domie, doesent sweden have a reputation for open mindedness in file sharing related matters? surely some of that would spill into their legal system. and yes it does certainly help PirateBay's case.

1625.4.2009 23:40

Quote:
Originally posted by wiimatrix:
Yet in Britain an MP can have two houses,buy porn and claim it all on expenses..
you need to read your newspapers more carefully - the porn reference was to a soft porn adult feature on a cable channel watched by the husband of a female MP while she was away on business

It was added to the normal monthly TV bill they paid and the mistake had been spotted and rectified and the amount repaid before the story even hit the press.

not exactly the same as "MP buying porn and claiming it all on expenses" is it ?

You sound about as objective as the judge in TPB trial.
Buying porn is buying porn. One person's hard-core is another person's soft porn. Get a grip. Like conflict of interest is conflict of interest, no matter what the excuse.

171.5.2009 17:13

The media industry should be the ones to demand a new trial, even though they won't. This clear and bright appearance of conflict makes their victory in court a pyrric victory. The credibility of Pirate Bay and related groups goes up as the credibility of media groups goes down. At this point the message becomes that the rich game the system to protect their profits while the rest of us get exploited. Rather than persuasion that Pirate Bay is wrong, the judge has made his verdict appear for sale and that Pirate Bay was victimized by a rigged system.

It is similar to the Sony Rootkit scandal. Sony engaged in behavior that would have gotten a smaller firm or individual draconian punishment. They got away with virtually no punishment, ergo the media companies can get away with computer crime that individuals get punished for and Sony's claim that others are violating the laws (the same laws they are violating) ring hollow and "people" continue to support and patronize file share groups.

The government also loses in this by not enforcing the law against all violators, large or small. Respect for the law and the government decreases a little and the burden of enforcement edges closer to the third world corruption model of "show me the person and I'll show you the law". That model doesn't seem to support the requirements of a dynamic modern society.

181.5.2009 22:12
varnull
Inactive

http://my.afterdawn.com/varnull/blog_entry.cfm/3435

read and consider the points ..

196.5.2009 17:24

I just had an epiphany. What if these greedy idiotic bastards are really losing money not mostly from "sharing" but because the so called "music Video" channels dont play the damn videos anymore. I dont know about the rest of you but when I saw a video for a new song it really made me feel connected to the song. its funny cuz i havent seen music videos on the channels like MTV VH1 & fuze in years....& consequently i havent bought a cd in years. All they play anymore is stuff i would beat my kid for watching... pure crap. And we all know radio sucks a big one these days. I bet if Mtv went back to actually playing videos people would be more into music again. If they do i hope they keep out the "made for ringtones" one hit wonders. i hate that (c)rap. (note i said "sharing" & did not say "piracy". Piracy means theft by reproduction without authorization for sale or profit)

207.5.2009 3:33

Thats probably because you should now be watching VH1 or somit grandad :-p hehe i know what you mean but under some extended deduction i would conclude its because WE GOT OLD !!!

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