04.07.21

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EPOLeaks on Misleading the Bundestag — Part 9: A Veritable Virtuoso of Legal Sophistry

Posted in Europe, Law, Patents at 5:57 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Series index:

  1. The EPO Bundestagate — Part 1: How the Bundestag Was (and Continues to be) Misled About EPO Affairs
  2. The EPO Bundestagate — Part 2: Lack of Parliamentary Oversight, Many Questions and Few Answers…
  3. The EPO Bundestagate — Part 3: A “Minor Interpellation” in the German Bundestag
  4. The EPO Bundestagate — Part 4: Parroting the GDPR-Compliance Myth
  5. The EPO Bundestagate — Part 5: The Federal Eagle’s Disconcerting Metamorphosis
  6. EPOLeaks on Misleading the Bundestag — Part 6: Dr Petri Starts the Ball Rolling…
  7. EPOLeaks on Misleading the Bundestag — Part 7: Ms Voßhoff Alerts the Bundestag…
  8. EPOLeaks on Misleading the Bundestag — Part 8: The EPO’s Tweedledum, Raimund Lutz
  9. You are here ☞ A Veritable Virtuoso of Legal Sophistry

Lutz - Breakfast in Beijing
Breakfast in Beijing: Lutz together with his master Battistelli at an IP junket in the Nuo Hotel (November 2017).

Summary: “Lutz is also reputed to be closely linked to the German branch of the influential UPC lobby group centred around Prof. Winfried Tilmann.”

As head of the German delegation on the EPO‘s Administrative Council, Lutz is reputed to have been a key mover-and-shaker in the secretive backroom political machinations which took place during the controversial and protracted procedure (copy here [PDF]) to find a successor to EPO President Alison Brimelow in 2009/2010.

“During his time as Vice-President of the EPO’s Directorate of Legal and International Affairs (DG5), Lutz gained notoriety for being one of Battistelli’s most faithful and devoted lapdogs.”Lutz is believed to have been instrumental in securing the deal which led to Battistelli’s election as EPO President in March 2010.

It is also rumoured that an element of this deal included the understanding that Battistelli would subsequently see to it that Lutz was rewarded with a cushy sinecure as a Vice-President of the EPO.

Such upper management positions at the EPO are greatly coveted by senior German civil servants because they provide a lot of perks, including a generous tax-free salary and a convenient pre-retirement opportunity for the lucky winners to beef up their pension entitlements using the disproportionately generous compensation arrangements for EPO managers.

During his time as Vice-President of the EPO’s Directorate of Legal and International Affairs (DG5), Lutz gained notoriety for being one of Battistelli’s most faithful and devoted lapdogs.

“…whenever Battistelli had any dubious undertaking in mind, his standard modus operandi at meetings of the Council was to wheel out Lutz who could be counted upon to brush aside any reservations expressed by sceptical or dissenting Council delegates.”EPO insiders reckon that his role was even more sinister and corrosive than that of Željko Topić.

Topić basically played the part of a “placeholder” or “stub” Vice-President providing cover for Batistelli’s HR dompteuse, Elodie Bergot, who ruled the roost as the de facto “prima donna” of the EPO’s personnel department.

Lutz, on the other hand, was entrusted with the far more consequential task of ensuring that the EPO’s Administrative Council was supplied with the right kind of legal advice.

Thus, whenever Battistelli had any dubious undertaking in mind, his standard modus operandi at meetings of the Council was to wheel out Lutz who could be counted upon to brush aside any reservations expressed by sceptical or dissenting Council delegates.

By means of a carefully deployed smokescreen of bluff, bluster and legal sophistry, the Council delegates were repeatedly conned into rubber-stamping all sorts of questionable measures and at the same time dissuaded from asking too many awkward questions.

EPO insiders confirm that the catastrophic erosion of legal standards and the rule of law at the EPO during the Battistelli era was largely attributable to the intellectually corruptive influence of Lutz as the provider of phony “legal advice” to a gullible and naïve Administrative Council.

Lutz the Klutz
Lutz is reputed to be the author of the “legal fiction” of EPO compliance with the standards and requirements of European data protection law.

Of particular relevance to the present series is Lutz’s reputed role as the author of the “legal fiction” of EPO compliance with the standards of European data protection law.

For example at the 155th meeting of the Administrative Council in March 2018, Lutz made a statement about the impending entry into force of the GDPR in which he assured the Council delegates that “[t]he Office had its own data protection guidelines, at a level comparable to the new regulation” and that national offices could transmit their data to the EPO “without breaching the GDPR”.

Lutz also referred the Council to the “public interest” derogation under Article 49(1)(d) GDPR as a legal basis for data transfers to the EPO.

However, such reliance on Article 49 (1) (d) GDPR is at odds with the position of the European Data Protection Board (EDPB).

The relevant guidelines published by the EDPB (copy here [PDF]) state that Article 49(1)(d) GDPR should not be relied upon as a basis for data transfers which take place on a large scale and in a systematic manner. According to the EDPB, the derogations set out in Article 49 should not become “the rule” in practice. On the contrary, all data exporters (in particular public bodies) are encouraged to put in place appropriate safeguards in accordance with Article 46 GDPR rather than relying on the derogation as per Article 49(1) (d).

The EPOnian myth of GDPR-compliance created by Lutz has formed the basis a whole host of self-congratulatory EPO puff pieces such as “Linked data, secure data” (warning: epo.org link; copy here [PDF]), published by Battistelli in his presidential blog on 25 May 2018 – the day on which the GDPR entered into force – and carefully designed to pull the wool over the eyes of the public about the true state of the EPO’s data protection framework.

Lutz UPC marketing
Lutz at a UPC promotion event in Munich (November 2017)

Lutz is also reputed to be closely linked to the German branch of the influential UPC lobby group centred around Prof. Winfried Tilmann. In this connection he is said to have been responsible for recruiting Margot Fröhlinger to act as the EPO’s "Mrs UPC" in charge of unitary patent “marketing activities” at the EPO.

In the next part we shall see how Battistelli’s virtuoso of legal sophistry was almost universally despised and reviled among the rank and file of EPO staff.

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