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Swedish High Court: 'Biased Magistrates Pure as the Driven Snow'
Precisely what the biased magistrates already ruled themselves.
STOCKHOLM (Radsoft) — Neither of the two appellate court magistrates accused of bias in the upcoming trial of The Pirate Bay are biased, the Swedish supreme court (Högsta domstolen) ruled today, thus backing up the appellate court's own ruling earlier that they weren't biased, dammit. So now the appellate court can once again start preparing for the
destruction trial of The Pirate Bay.
The defence are however already preparing their appeal to the EU.
Swedish prime minister Fredrik Reinfeldt, who won the last election on his oft-repeated promise to not criminalise an entire generation over the file-sharing issue, has worked with the Swedish court system to make sure the appeal doesn't take place too soon before the new national elections coming in September.
Carl Lundström, Peter Sunde, Fredrik Neij, and Gottfrid Svartholm of The Pirate Bay have had reason to accuse the Swedish court system of many things over the years, but who expected they'd deliberately assign the 'bias' ruling to magistrates known to be members of IP lobby organisations? And the supreme court waited in the wings 'just in case'.
Sweden is a relatively small 'democracy' and the capital Stockholm is an even smaller ecosystem where the powers that be share the same rarified atmosphere, eat their lunches together at the same subventioned restaurants, go to the same parties, plays, and operas, know each other on a first name basis, and have everybody's number on speed dial. There are no surprises here - Stockholm's the perfect greenhouse for cultivating good old buddy-buddy corruption.
The appellate court had already dismissed the accusations themselves (only in Sweden) and so the matter was referred to the nation's second highest instance. The ruling was a given, the process a mere formality. Magistrates Ulrika Ihrfeldt and Kristina Boutz are 'pure as the driven snow' as everybody has already been taught.
Somewhere not too far away Edgar Bronfman is smiling and sipping on a '7&7'.
√ Appellate court magistrate Kristina Boutz: she's a member of SFIR - Svenska Föreningen för Industriellt Rättsskydd.
√ Appellate court magistrate Ulrika Ihrfelt: she's been a member of SFU - Svenska Föreningen för Upphovsrätt - which is financed by John Kennedy's IFPI.
Lower court magistrate Tomas Norström who presided over the first trial is also a member of those organisations. [Norström chose to not tell anyone about it.] No one twisted the arms of Boutz and Ihrfelt to join anything. There are plenty of appellate court magistrates who have no such affiliations.
The original plan was to have the appeals case last November - long enough before the national elections so people had time to calm down and keep the current regime in power. But because of the accusations of bias and now that the national elections are drawing closer, the sitting government understand they must prevent a repeat of the EU elections. They must make sure the trial and civil rights in general are not hot campaign issues.
'They Agree with Me!'
'I see the supreme court saw things the same way I do', said Ulrika Ihrfeldt today after hearing of the ruling, referring to her own dismissal of her own charges of bias a year earlier. (Yes she ruled on herself - this is only possible in Sweden.)
The appellate court must now figure out when to hold the trial. A few weeks before the elections was fine, but prime minister Reinfeldt wouldn't have it, even though after the elections is difficult for several of the parties involved.
'Peter Sunde says he can't attend after the elections, so now we have to rule on whether that's a legitimate excuse', says Ihrfeldt who never ruled on or even questioned the legitimacy of her prior instructions to postpone matters until after the September elections.
Defence legal counsel Per Samuelson isn't discouraged - such outrageous rulings only make it easier for him to come into contact with the European Court. But he's nonetheless adamant that today's decision undermines the Swedish court system's legitimacy.
'I expect the European Court will get the chance to look at this. We have six months to submit an appeal, and after that the wheels of justice turn very slowly, so we're talking about six, seven years before we get a ruling, but it's important to get that ruling.'
Samuelson was the one who suggested the European Court issue a preliminary ruling before the first trial of The Pirate Bay, specifically in the context of Swedish and European copyright law which was thought to make the trial pointless. (Samuelson's suggestion was dismissed by the unbiased magistrate Tomas Norström.) Samuelson's also the one who made a fool out of IFPI chairman/CEO John Kennedy in the trial. (The radio feed of that cross-examination was classic courtroom entertainment.)
'This decision doesn't exactly inspire confidence in the broad youth demographic who backed The Pirate Bay in the trial. And unfortunately I think this decision will have a counterproductive effect where the coming appeal verdict will not be accepted no matter which way it goes. Young people are laughing at the whole thing. They see it as a farce. And today's decision only adds further grist to the mill.'
Be still until after the September national Swedish elections. Then the TPB farce can continue.
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