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2007-06-04: Time to Give Up

'More than a year has gone since the raid on The Pirate Bay. This travesty of justice gets bigger for every day that passes.' Translated from the Expressen editorial of 4 June 2007.

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It seems more and more as if those fifty seven police officers didn't primarily tramp into Internet provider PRQ to fight crime but to fight uncomfortable people - the file sharers.

The mysterious game which took place before the raid speaks for that interpretation.

Even if 'IT prosecutor' Håkan Roswall is no whiz at IT he understood from a memo dated November 2005 that The Pirate Bay weren't breaking copyright law: the site doesn't store any copyrighted materials.

But Roswall convinced himself that The Pirate Bay could be guilty of 'accessory to breaking copyright law' because they enabled contacts between file sharers. What the IT prosecutor didn't think about was that in principle all chat programs - including Microsoft's MSN Messenger - offer the same capabilities.

But Roswall understood that an 'accessory' trial could at the very best result in a fine - and raiding The Pirate Bay was therefore not justifiable.

It was now an intricate web of communications began. Hollywood lobbyists traveled to the seat of Swedish government in Rosenbad and told amongst others state secretary Dan Eliasson how much they despised The Pirate Bay. A huge amount of correspondence was sent between lobby groups and authorities in the US and the Swedish department of justice.

Dan Eliasson was evidently impressed with the lobbyists. In a letter to John G Malcolm of the lobby group MPAA he wrote that the Swedish government expected 'immediate results' from their authorities.

Exactly what immediate results he was referring to we of course cannot know. But shortly after this exchange Roswall sent fifty seven (!) police to investigate a crime he'd already said could only result in fines.

And now Roswall's on the hot seat. His original opinion that The Pirate Bay could not be prosecuted seems to have been correct. The IT prosecutor has namely still not been able to specify charges. And he recently asked for an extension for the second time.

And meanwhile the confiscated servers - several of which belong to the opinion organisation the Pirate Bureau - remain in the custody of the police.

This is rather curious seeing as copying servers doesn't take very long at all.

And only Roswall knows why this affair is proceeding so exceptionally sluggishly.

It can be because he is desperately hunting for things to prosecute for - things that simply can't be found - and if The Pirate Bay are exonerated the whole affair threatens to become a scandal.

Or maybe it's a show of power against The Pirate Bay and the Pirate Bureau.

Either way it's unacceptable. Roswall should either present his case or return the servers.

And the events leading up to the raid need to be further investigated.

The former government classified as secret a great part of the correspondence between the lobby groups and authorities in the US and the department of justice right before the raid.

Our new government should release these documents in order to investigate possible ministerial control. Up to now Beatrice Ask has regrettably chosen not to do so.

It should be in everyone's interests to reestablish confidence in our system of justice.

I think he's waiting for the right people to take over in the right places so he can push his 'court decision' through. It's the only way he can save his job.
 - 'liberty lost'

If TBP are prosecuted and found guilty so reasonably must most of the search engines on the Internet meet the same fate. Yes I'm speaking of Google, Altavista, and Yahoo. They link to copyrighted materials people can download. The only people who lose money on file sharing are companies who want to decide how, where, and when we should be allowed to listen to or view movies and music. The artists get very little money per sold song. And without file sharing they wouldn't reach such a wide public.
 - 'AMIGA'

Further proof Swedish prosecutors don't cut the muster. Don't forget it's the prosecutors, not the police, who make all the decisions about raids etc. They're also responsible for all the miscarriages of justice. When is this career group going to be investigated?
 - 'Perry L'

This is creepy. Seems we have a government inside our government.
 - 'Boss'

See Also
Industry Watch: A Reek of Filth
Industry Watch: Download Bodström
Industry Watch: A Trip to Washington
Industry Watch: Barely Legal
Industry Watch: It's War!
Industry Watch: 'I Knocked Them Offline'
Industry Watch: Anti-Pirate Bureau Closed
Industry Watch: Declaration of War
Industry Watch: On Our Side
Industry Watch: The Police Bay
Industry Watch: Sending the Wrong Message?
Industry Watch: Cat and Mouse Game
Industry Watch: Anatomy of a Career
Industry Watch: Pirates & Anti-Pirates
Industry Watch: TPB Raking in Millions
Industry Watch: TPB Update

IDG.se/Computer Sweden: Ex-vd misstänkt i Pirate Bay-härvan

TorrentFreak: MPAA Begged Sweden to Take Down The Pirate Bay
TorrentFreak: The Police Have No Evidence Against The Pirate Bay
TorrentFreak: The Pirate Bay Not Impressed by Announced Prosecution
TorrentFreak: Prosecutor Compares the Pirate Bureau and The Pirate Bay to Terrorists

Rixstep FTP: From MPA's Malcolm to Swedish State Secretary Eliasson (PDF)

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