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12.08.17

EPO Scandal Spills Over to Irish Media, So It’s Time for the Backstory

Posted in Europe, Patents at 3:14 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Irish Leprechaun

Summary: A lot more is being revealed by the media this week (regarding the EPO’s “war on judges”) and now that it’s a more ‘mainstream’ subject we can shed light on the background to it

Background/overview of EPO affairs is essential for getting more people actively involved. We’re aware that many people out there don’t know (or don’t care) what happens at the EPO. They don’t even know that it’s the second-largest European institution. Many don’t even realise that it exists. Over here there’s a cross-section of the population which is up in arms over the European Commission, angered by relatively small ‘scandals’ while turning a blind eye to much bigger scandals.

The latest scandal was covered in 5 articles yesterday, namely:

  1. ILO is ‘Forcing’ Team Battistelli to Compensate the Banned Judge and Give Him Back His Job
  2. Meanwhile in Eponia, Tyrant Battistelli Must be Seeking Advice on How to Refuse to Obey Court’s Orders (Again)
  3. ILO Said Give the Judge His Job Back, But Christoph Ernst’s Administrative Council Will Likely Let Him Go (Unemployed)
  4. Less Than 24 Hours Later the EPO Already Refuses to Obey Court Orders From ILO (Updated)
  5. Battistelli’s EPO is Once Again Caught in Very Gross Violation of the European Patent Convention (EPC)

“The ILO is alive,” said one blog post, “but are the boards too,” a comment continued/inquired.

Here is that comment:

“The board of Appeal Member turned up for work today and the head of EPO security told him that she was under instructions from ”above” to disregard the court order, and he will not be allowed in any EPO buildings”

Should it be true that this judge is not allowed to resume his activity as a member of the boards for at least the period of time he still had to serve when he was suspended, his colleagues of the boards should immediately stop working until the AC has reinstated the rule of law.

Otherwise they would definitely disqualify themselves as judges, and provide even more grounds for the Federal Constitutional Court to deny constitutionality of the european patent procedure for lack of a truly independant judiciary.

The next (and last) comment explained that whatever the EPO does/did to the judge may be a death blow to UPC. To quote:

Look, matey, I know a dead parrot when I see one, and I’m looking at one right now.

Title says it all really. The only way that the UPC could have survived these decisions is if the EPO had immediately followed them in full *and* reappointed the judge. With this on top of the decision of the Enlarged BoA in case no. Art. 23 1/16, I really don’t see how the German Constitutional Court could ever find that the BoA are in any way judicially independent.

For those who haven’t read them yet…
Decision 3958: http://www.ilo.org/dyn/triblex/triblexmain.fullText?p_lang=en&p_judgment_no=3958&p_language_code=EN

Decision 3960: http://www.ilo.org/dyn/triblex/triblexmain.fullText?p_lang=en&p_judgment_no=3960&p_language_code=EN

There’s deep juridical deficit and profound disregard for the principles of the Rule of Law at the EPO, so how can anyone entrust/assign the EPO to deal with “unitary” effect? That would be insane, not just irresponsible.

And speaking of UPC, don’t mind British Team UPC going on about the supposed ‘progress’ in the UK. Even a longtime UPC proponent (Michel Barnier) serves to debunk these people. A British journalist has just said (in effect rebutting this jingoism from Robinson): “The line about the UPC being part of negotiations also puzzling. I was informed by a spokesperson for Barnier that the UPC was not an EU institution therefore not part of the exit negotiations.”

Obviously not. It’s just a lot of noise from Robinson et al lately, among unfortunate admissions that he’s being disingenuous/dishonest (thread) and proud to be self-deluding (as even people from the same sector as him regularly allege). But anyway, we digress.

“There’s deep juridical deficit and profound disregard for the principles of the Rule of Law at the EPO, so how can anyone entrust/assign the EPO to deal with “unitary” effect?”Ireland, which canceled (or ‘indefinitely postponed’) its UPC referendum, has finally caught up with the above scandal (not just the EPO fiasco in general). Yesterday at night we found the latest EPO scandal in Irish media (Irish Times). The Irish media too is now naming Patrick Corcoran. The Register (now with 30 comments on the subject) was the first to do it, in effect ‘unmasking’ him. Desirable or not? We have known the name for a number of years, but we chose to prevent associating the name with the bogus accusations. Perhaps now that ILO sides with Corcoran it will be simpler for the public to accept that he’s innocent.

The Irish Times says that “Mr Corcoran’s central complaint was the EPO president, Mr Battistelli, played a key role in the decision to suspend him and to later continue the suspension. He argued that Mr Battistelli was not a “neutral and disinterested party” because he was the subject of the alleged defamatory attacks.”

Well, in a functioning society he’d be in a straightjacket somewhere. He’s clearly under-qualified (he doesn’t even speak the local language, he lacks education in the domain he deals with and so on) and he turned the pride of Europe — probably world’s best patent office — into the shame of Europe. He did this in just a few years.

To quote further from the Irish Times, which is understandably sympathetic towards Corcoran:

Mr Corcoran argued this was a “manifestly flawed opinion, which was tainted with bias and which breached the principle of due process.

“The president had a personal interest in the matter, and thus should have recused himself before rendering such opinion on account of a real or apparent conflict of interest.”

According to documents disclosed to the ILO tribunal, the EPO’s internal investigative unit alleged Mr Corcoran had, using a pseudonym, made defamatory statements that Mr Battistelli had attempted to “buy votes” by hosting delegates.

It alleged Mr Corcoran also sent a letter to the deputy mayor of Saint-Germain-en-Laye in France, where the president was a town councillor, accusing Mr Battistelli of abuse of power at the EPO.

The tribunal accepted Mr Corcoran’s argument that Mr Battistelli should not have had a decision-making role in the suspension because he was the subject of the alleged defamation.

It said Mr Battistelli had a conflict of interest and said the administrative council erred in not making a ruling to this effect. It said the matter should have instead been handled by the EPO’s second most senior official.

Another new article on the subject comes (again) from IPPro Patents and it’s unique in the sense that it quotes the Central Staff Committee:

The ILO said the situation “casts doubt on the president’s impartiality”. [What an understatement!]

Battistelli is due to leave his post as president of the EPO in mid-2018, but has recently attempted to push through major reforms, including the replacement of permanent employment contracts with five-year fixed term contracts.

In its letter, the CSC said that, prior to the publication of the ILO judgments, “the president of the office managed to convince the administrative council to convene two exceptional budget and finance committee meetings in order to enable him to get his latest proposed reforms approved before the end of his reign”.

It concluded: “The ball is now with the administrative council, which urgently has to answer the following question: should these reforms be left to a president and team having such a record of performance?”

We would like to share with readers some background to this ‘case’. It is connected to another ‘case’ (Els Hardon, a prominent SUEPO official) and has similarities to it, including the bogus “armed Nazi”-themed accusations (Nazi salutes, so-called ‘snipers’ and so on). It’s based on a bunch of lies and the purpose is to distract from real, legitimate abuses of Team Battistelli. The “Nazi” smear is designed only to discredit the so-called ‘whistleblowers’ (if that’s the right term).

“There was also the picture of Željko Topić’s stolen car in the EPO parking. I can’t say who took that one, but I wouldn’t be surprised that it’s a part of the story.”
      –Anonymous
“I think that this is the real background to the Hardon/Corcoran affair,” one reader once told us. “From what I can piece together Corcoran was communicating with Hardon stuff on Željko Topić, essentially the articles in the Balkan press. What was communicated, and how it was sent isn’t clear, but from what I heard, it was private communication.

“The material hardly found an audience beyond the INTERNAL, password-protected SUEPO forum. There was juicy stuff [e.g. the Zagreb newspaper articles], but nothing beyond what has come out since, and this forum could hardly be qualified as “public”. These idiots don’t realise that the public enjoying the EPO dirty laundry must have grown a thousand fold since the scandal began.

“There was also the picture of Željko Topić’s stolen car in the EPO parking. I can’t say who took that one, but I wouldn’t be surprised that it’s a part of the story.

“The SUEPO forum went offline exactly at the time the storm began, and never returned since. Coincidence?

“The SUEPO forum went offline exactly at the time the storm began, and never returned since.”
      –Anonymous
“This is what they called “publication of defamation”, and probably the reason why Battistelli was actually unable to put together a case before the BOA, but could only provide [falsifiable] data on an USB stick. They would have indicted themselves more than the accused. They must have been somehow hoping that the EBA would have understood what was expected of them.

“As to who said what to whom when, we’ll probably never know.”

Thankfully, the BOA/EBA didn’t fall for it.

“One version of the story I heard,” our reader continued, “is that Battistelli and Željko Topić were attempting to destroy Els Hardon, which explained the targeted intelligence gathering, and Patrick Corcoran merely happened to be collateral damage. Corcoran’s mistake was to use an internal computer for private communication with Hardon, or accessing the SUEPO forum from work. Another version of the story I heard in the initial phase of the scandal is that the EPO public WLAN access points are compromised, and Corcoran used an unencrypted connection from his personal laptop.”

We now know a lot more about the nature of that surveillance.

“So in a sense,” our reader continued, “Corcoran “did” something, but probably nothing which could be sanctioned under actual libel laws before a real court, especially if the information was 1) true and 2) transmitted privately or to a limited audience, and/or 3) previously published elsewhere.”

“Željko Topić’s henchmen realised through their snooping that something was happening, and the Croatian bully went ballistic. Thus the particularly nasty cases against Corcoran and Hardon.”
      –Anonymous
This information had been widely circulated long before that. Years in fact. We saw it too.

Our reader said that “Željko Topić’s henchmen realised through their snooping that something was happening, and the Croatian bully went ballistic. Thus the particularly nasty cases against Corcoran and Hardon. Battistelli and Željko Topić did not even stop a minute to ponder the damage they would inflict upon themselves — and the EPO.

“One or two years earlier there was another period when the SUEPO forum went offline for several months, officially because of a software problem.

“The traffic on the server was mostly in French, and you had some idea of who was posting. It was lively, and much read within the office, but, as usual, most of the posting was done by relatively few members.

“I understand that the earlier eclipse had something to do with another scandal you probably haven’t heard of, and for which all evidence was effectively suppressed. It happened about a decade ago.

“The more is known about these scandals, the more likely it is that law will be upheld and the right people held accountable.”“Someone merely ALLUDED on the forum at the events and the culprit, without actually naming him. The party got wind of this and got on his high horses. He threatened legal action before a German court, with full support of the EPO management. [He is still well in place in the Office]. But a defence would have involved divulging internal information — that’s VERBOTEN — and the enquiry results were unavailable anyway, so the best attitude was to retreat. And I can’t imagine the party going to court and saying “I’m the SOB they’re actually referring to on that squalid little forum”… Without any documentary evidence, [which I naturally hope to lay my hands on one day], it’s pointless to even explain the story as I heard it.”

If someone has more information about that, please do get in touch with us. The more is known about these scandals, the more likely it is that law will be upheld and the right people held accountable.

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A Single Comment

  1. john said,

    December 8, 2017 at 5:32 am

    Gravatar

    I think you got the backstory wrong.
    What you don’t know is that everybody at the time new Topic’s scandal. Someone, I don’t know whom, sent translations of the press articles from Croatia to various people in the office. They ended up on the notice boards, to be quickly removed by the administration of course. Several times, during months. However, the person who sent the articles can neither be Patrick C. nor Elisabeth H., because they don’t speak Serbo-Croatian. Online translations were much poorer at the the time than today, it must have been someone who knew the language. The person was never found, so it cannot be a group of people… there is a traitor in every group when one has the amount of money Battistelli has.
    Also: that Patrick C. emailed to his staff representatives is perfectly normal, whom else are you supposed to contact when there is a scandal with one of your vice-presidents? Last but not least, there were 4 staff representatives disciplined and more investigated, not just Elisabeth H.
    To me, it looks just like the opposite of your theory. The aim was primarily to destroy the union by attacking the members in charge and dismiss the most prominent to frighten the others. Elisabeth H. was not dismissed because Patrick C. emailed her, it is the other way round.

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