posted by Thom Holwerda on Sun 24th May 2009 12:06 UTC
IconMid-April, the four founders of The Pirate Bay were found guilty of being accessories to breaching copyright law; they aided in breaching copyright of 33 files. As a result, they were sentenced to one year in jail and a 2.75 million EUR fine. However, it was quickly revealed that the judge in the case was heavily biased, and ever since then there's been a search for a judge who is actually not involved with any pro-copyright groups or with the lawyers working for the entertainment industry in this case. Turns out that's actually kind of hard.

The original judge during the case turned out to be a member of several pro-copyright groups. To make matters worse, the lawyers working for the entertainment industry in this case were members of the same groups, which obviously meant that the judge was simply not a good fit for the case. So, the search began for a new judge, one without any affiliations, to investigate the conflict-of-interest.

Well, this turns out to be a bit more difficult than anticipated. Judge Ulrika Ihrfeldt was appointed by Court President Fredrik Wersäll to investigate the conflict-of-interest, but Ihrfeldt herself soon revealed that she has also been a member of the Swedish Copyright Association, making her unfit to preside over this case.

Judge Anders Eka was then moved forward, but Eka, too, is connected to the lawyers working for the entertainment industry. Eka is part of the Stockholm Center for Commercial Law, and who are also affiliated with this research centre? Exactly, Monique Wadsted and Peter Danowsky, lawyers who represent the entertainment industry in this court case. Eka says he has no background in copyright law, and that he is not friends with the two lawyers, but he does acknowledge that an investigation into possible bias on his end should be undertaken.

So, investigate a judge for bias who is investigating a judge for bias. If you ever need proof that the entertainment industry is a good lobbyist, here you have it.

If the original judge is to be found biased, the trial will have to be redone.

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