EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

04.05.16

EPO Management Mocks Justice and Bans Judges, Takes Away Their Independence

Posted in Europe, Law, Patents at 7:49 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

The European Patent Office (EPO) is now the antithesis of justice

Kongstad caricature

Summary: The European Patent Office continues to stomp on justice and even on judges — a fact that evades nobody who bothers looking at the pertinent facts

TECHRIGHTS is disturbed (albeit not surprised given the EPO's record with the law) to come to grips with the fact that for nearly a year and a half a judge has been suspended and in spite of the Board (both of them, board of appeal and Board 28) and the Council telling off Battistelli for his abuse of justice (they put it more politely as they tiptoe) the judge remains suspended. The other day someone sent us some text that suggests bringing back the suspended judge, who was put on 'house ban' against the rules of the EPO (Battistelli later changed the rules to better defend his abuses). That would at least restore some confidence in EPO management and show that it regrets suspending justice itself. For those who don’t know, the judge is alleged to have shown judgments or charges against management, which was thus unsuitable to serve. In other words, the judge was a sort of whistleblower (hoping to uphold the law or persuade others to do so). Here is the text explaining the situation from start to finish (present), including the chilling effect it led to (imposing blind obedience through fear):

The thin independence of DG3

In its ruling R19/12 of May 2014, the Enlarged Board of Appeal found that the executive functions of the Vice-President of DG3 were incompatible with his judiciary function as, Chairman of the Enlarged Board. In response, Mr Battistelli relieved VP3 of most of his executive functions flowing from Article 10(3) EPC. He furthermore put all DG3 members directly under his authority for administrative requests (duty travel, approval of lectures, side activities etc.). This clearly infringes upon the independence of the Board members.

A further attack on the independence of DG3 occurred in December 2014 when a Member of the Boards of Appeal was subjected to a “house ban” by the President. The initial accusation was defamation of VP4. As usual these days, further accusations were added during the procedure. A first request to the Enlarged Board of Appeal to propose his removal from office was rejected by the Enlarged Board of Appeal after a hearing in September 2014 on the grounds that the accusations were insufficiently substantiated. In the October meeting of the Administrative Council, Mr Battistelli asked the Council to dismiss the colleague concerned without the required proposal of the Enlarged Board. The Council refused and instead decided to submit a second request to the Enlarged Board to propose removal from office. During a second hearing before the Enlarged Board in February, the representatives of the Council withdrew their second request. The correct thing to do now would be to lift the suspension and reinstate the colleague concerned. In the mean time, Mr Battistelli persuaded the Council to change the law governing suspensions. In December last year a majority of the delegates voted in favour of CA/D 18/15 [NL and DE voted against; FR GR SE and SK abstained]. This amendment to the ServRegs gives the Council the power to suspend a member of the EPO’s judicial branch (i.e. members of 9the Boards) on a salary reduced by up to 50% for up to 24 months – or even longer in “exceptional cases”. The amendment applies in a retroactive manner to the pending DG3 case. Aside from the question concerning the legality of such retroactive application, the measure has a negative impact on the independence of DG3 as a whole. The Council has now granted itself the power – whether acting alone or in concert with the President – to sideline any “irksome judge” without the need to observe due process by following the procedure foreseen in Article 23(1) EPC.

The next attack is possibly in preparation, with the so-called proposal for a structural reform of the EPO Boards of Appeal. An internal working group, the DG5 task force, had been entrusted with the mission of drafting the proposal. However, faced with the manifest unwillingness of the Office to propose measures really improving the independence of the Boards and with massive headwind from interested circles, the Council obliged the President to withdraw his orientation paper CA/98/15 and decided to take over in December. A status report is foreseen for the March Council meeting, with more concrete measures for the June meeting. However, the five “main points” of the reform, as sketched by the Swiss delegation during the December meeting , do not necessarily bode well for the future.

Using the Animal Farm theme (book reference for the uninitiated), the following cartoon/caricature has been issued and yes, it alludes to Hardon, who is alleged to have spoken to the above judge in an effort to help uphold justice. Based on recent reports, they now have the same lawyer. The cases are similar and intertwined only in a few ways (like the ‘sexed up’ charges, which help distract from the real reason for suspension and/or dismissal).

At the EPO, you see, those who pursue justice have justice bent against them, in an effort to simply silence them. How can anyone not consider this worthy of a strike — one that explicitly calls for the restoration of justice at the EPO? Even the Council recognises that this is a problem, as per its last meeting’s formal notes.

EPO justice caricature
EPO ‘justice’ — only the pension restored by Battistelli in an effort to salvage his job (as time is running out for Battistelli and he may soon come under more attacks from Board 28)

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

What Else is New


  1. IRC Proceedings: Monday, February 17, 2020

    IRC logs for Monday, February 17, 2020



  2. Links 18/2/2020: Linux 5.6 RC2, Wine 5.2, GNU Social Contract and Sparky 2020.02 Special Editions

    Links for the day



  3. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, February 16, 2020

    IRC logs for Sunday, February 16, 2020



  4. Links 16/2/2020: MX Linux 19.1 and MyPaint 2.0

    Links for the day



  5. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, February 15, 2020

    IRC logs for Saturday, February 15, 2020



  6. Guest Article: Au Revoir, GNU/Linux

    "Funny how OSI just ended up being another vehicle for their takeover of the computing world..."



  7. Former Microsoft Employee: ZDNet is Owned by Microsoft (and Others) in Some Senses

    A noteworthy message we've received from someone who knows Microsoft from the inside



  8. Links 15/2/2020: Blender 2.82, Qt 5.15 Alpha and NetBSD 9.0 Released

    Links for the day



  9. Microsoft Views 'Open Source' as a Zero-Cost Heist Opportunity (Making Proprietary Software/Spyware Using Other People's Free Labour)

    Making GPL-licensed (copyleft) software and hosting it outside Microsoft’s jaws is the best way to counter the abusive monopolist, which still says it “loves” what it is actually attacking



  10. Did Microsoft 'Buy' ZDNet?

    A look at what ZDNet tells its readers (screenshot from this morning) and a rare look at how its writers are censored/suppressed



  11. Anatomy of a Crime and Protection From Prosecution

    It’s hard to forget what António Campinos hides for his friend



  12. Today's EPO is a Fraud Managed by Frauds

    Beneath the scandals associated with systematic abuse against staff, union-busting (silencing whistleblowers) and en masse granting of invalid patents — the hallmark of grotesque maladministration — lie a bunch of even greater crimes



  13. IRC Proceedings: Friday, February 14, 2020

    IRC logs for Friday, February 14, 2020



  14. One Need Only Look at ZDNet's 'Linux' Section to Understand It's a Microsoft Propaganda Operation

    A timely new snapshot (or screenshot) that demonstrates what ZDNet became after hiring Microsoft employees as ‘journalists’ and censoring on behalf of Microsoft, defaming Free software figures and so on



  15. Links 14/2/2020: New Release of KStars, OpenSSH 8.2, Rhythmbox 3.4.4, Flatpak 1.6.2

    Links for the day



  16. The Uselessness of Social Control Media and Why We Need RSS Feeds' Resurgence More Than Ever

    Social control media became pure noise or misinformation, usually in pursuit of financial expansion alone, and it is also a censorship machine which discourages not falsehoods but unconventional thinking



  17. Another New 'Clown' for the UPC 'Circus'

    A former writer of IPPro Magazine (which seems to be defunct now) reports another shuffle -- perhaps the fifth in a few years -- of "IP" [sic] Minister for the UK; it doesn't bode well for the Unified Patent Court (UPC)



  18. IRC Proceedings: Thursday, February 13, 2020

    IRC logs for Thursday, February 13, 2020



  19. Links 13/2/2020: Ubuntu 18.04.4 LTS, Septor 2020, Endless OS 3.7.7, Wayland 1.18.0, KDE Plasma 5.18 and GTK 3.98 Released

    Links for the day



  20. The Microsoft Propaganda Model

    Classic new examples (real screenshots) of how Microsoft-funded media entraps people looking for information about "Linux" to actually push Microsoft talking points and marketing, cover-up, face-saving lies etc.



  21. What's Evil is Forcing People to Use Something They Don't Want and Typically Dislike

    The difference between Google Search and Microsoft is that many people actually want to use Google (and don't have to)



  22. 2020: The Year Microsoft Became Honest... About Being Corrupt and Criminal

    Microsoft is destroying any past attempts to portray itself as a reformed company or 'recovering criminal'; nothing is really changing and everyone has noticed



  23. Free Software is Being Abandoned by Opponents of Software Patents and It's Being Attacked by Patent Trolls

    The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is rotting away as an advocate against software patents; Patents on algorithms are still being granted (even when courts repeatedly reject these) and Red Hat's Chief Patent Counsel remains Manny Schecter, one of the loudest proponents of such patents (citing the likes of Adam Mossoff this week, in effect Koch operatives); this is a very big problem because Free software projects come under a barrage of lawsuits, using patents like those IBM lobbies ferociously to legitimise



  24. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, February 12, 2020

    IRC logs for Wednesday, February 12, 2020



  25. Links 12/2/2020: KDE Neon 5.18, Tails 4.3 and WordPress 5.4 Beta

    Links for the day



  26. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, February 11, 2020

    IRC logs for Tuesday, February 11, 2020



  27. Links 11/2/2020: New Firefox and KDE Plasma

    Links for the day



  28. Sometimes ILO-AT is Good for Nothing But Law Firms in or Around Switzerland

    ILO-AT’s latest judgements are out. But ILO — and by extension the UN — are still morally deficient and they give the impression that don’t care about people (or that ILO is in bed with the same businesses WIPO (UN) serves, i.e. no better than WB/IMF).



  29. The European Patent Office Continues to Violate the European Patent Convention (EPC) With Impunity While the European Commission Lets That Happen

    The European Commission (and Union) can be seen as increasingly complicit in the EPO's abuses; this means that the EPO has become a liability or source of accountability for the integrity of Europe as a bloc



  30. IRC Proceedings: Monday, February 10, 2020

    IRC logs for Monday, February 10, 2020


RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

Recent Posts