Bonum Certa Men Certa

Benoît Battistelli et al in an Allegedly New Campaign of Defamation Against Staff Member

Battistelli is Abusing His Workers Whom He is Not Even Allowed to Fire, Let Alone Touch

Manchester



Summary: New remarks about the unprecedented attack on staff members, which may be beyond unethical and potentially illegal, too

AT THE VERY end of last week we were rather mortified to learn about the disgusting PR campaign (institutional harassment or merciless witch-hunt) that Benoît Battistelli et al had launched, as it turned out to be the case late on Friday (whereupon new information was divulged). This was certainly coordinated in advance. Just how low can these goons ever stoop? They will never stop. After all those suicides one might wonder if killing union organisers (as Coca Cola did) is also on the agenda. Godwin's Law (using Nazis for one's agenda in a debate) oughtn't be proven in European institutions, especially not in Germany.



In order to protect the anonymity of some people, this post will allude to people mostly by their role, not by their name or nationality, but certainly, based on staged/controlled media 'leaks', Benoît Battistelli et al have no respect for the privacy and dignity of people in the organisation they purport to be managing. They continue proving this month after month, as people who have been following our coverage probably know damn well. Our EPO Wiki will soon be organised by theme (not just chronologically) to better introduce the uninitiated to this ongoing EPO crisis, comprising literally dozens of separable scandals.

"After all those suicides one might wonder if killing union organisers (as Coca Cola did) is also on the agenda."A new document has reached us from several independent sources (so we can confirm authenticity, by means of comparison), which are clearly eager to put an end to Battistelli's reign of terror. We are talking about extremely gross character assassination here, for those who haven't yet read Friday's posts. This has the hallmark of a classic smear campaign, which seeks to characterise the problem with separate or orthogonal perceived issues (whether real or fictional), such as framing the issue of transparency activism in Wikileaks as a matter of women's rights, or framing the issue of EPO transparency (or exposure of abuse) as one of nationalism/racism (as is often the case when it comes to desperate attempts to clear VP4's name, framing critics as anti-Croatia or white supremacists who are against French officials in Germany). The EPO habitually evokes the equivalent of 'national security' in order to squash dissent too, as everyone saw last week (VP4 is reportedly the person to blame).

There is a striking similarity right now between what Battistelli is doing and what British police (under Swedish and US pressure/direction) has done in the UK at the gross expense of around $20,000,000 (of taxpayers' money) when it chased people up some embassy south of here (in London), alleging to be cracking down on or policing one kind of dubious 'abuse' rather than an act of truth-telling (against which is there no law). Here is what Battistelli is up to right now:



NOT OUR VALUES


The European Patent Office in disrepute



In terms of damage to our public image, the damage caused at the end of last week by Mr Battistelli was probably the worst in our (almost) 40 years' of existence.

SUEPO notes the following sequence of events:

- On Thursday 15 Oct., the Administrative Council did not follow the proposal of Mr Battistelli, which was in flagrant breach of Art. 23(1) EPC, to fire the suspended DG3 colleague. - On the evening of the same day an article appeared in the Financiele Dagblad1 (NL) which contained serious and partially bizarre accusations against the DG3 colleague, followed by further publications on the subject in the next days. - On Friday 16 Oct. an internal Communiqué, entitled “Defending our values” by the President was issued which was very much along the same lines as the preceding (!) publication in the Financiele Dagblad.

SUEPO, having no insight into the details of the disciplinary case, will not attempt to comment on the merits but would like to point out that:

a) everybody is to be considered innocent until proven guilty, and b) pending disciplinary procedures are confidential, primarily to protect the person concerned.

The procedure is still pending since the matter has been referred to the Enlarged Board of Appeal, which has yet to give its opinion. The accusations openly made by Mr Battistelli in his Communiqué of 16 Oct. are thus wholly inappropriate.

There is more:

- During the September PD-MAC meeting, Mr Battistelli announced to the participants that the Administrative Council would decide on the DG3 disciplinary case in its October meeting, after which the (DG3 member’s) "wrong doings will be made public.” - A week before the Council meeting, Mr Minnoye (VP1), Ms Mittermaier (our new Dir. External Communication) and Mr Osterwalder (EPO press spokesman) apparently met with a journalist of the Financiele Dagblad.

It thus looks as if, frustrated by his failure to persuade the Council to follow his patently unlawful proposal, Mr Battistelli nevertheless decided to execute the second part of his plan, i.e. to expose the purported wrong-doings of the DG3 colleague. If this is correct, it would suggest that the apparently selective leaking of (extracts from) the confidential report of the Investigation Unit to various media is part of a premeditated campaign orchestrated by Mr Battistelli2. The purpose of these leaks seem to be to discredit the colleague concerned, and additionally exerting pressure on the Enlarged Board of Appeal with the aim of "encouraging" it to come to the “right” finding.

Mr Battistelli: who is bringing the European Patent Office into disrepute?



____________ 1 http://www.suepo.org/archive/ex15387cp.pdf (with English translation) 2 The funds (880.000 Euros) for media campaigning had already been reserved – see CA/F 19/15



Regarding footnote 2, recall the "media partner" scandal (paid-for puff pieces for the EPO) and therefore bear in mind that the EPO's management habitually bribes the media in clever/artistic ways. It helps shape the press and even removes negativism.

While we are waiting (still) for the Munich-based paper's translation let us explain to readers what is going on here, based on our collective understanding (please correct in the comments section below if wrong conclusions were somehow reached).

Having installed keyloggers and illegally grabbed images of people (hidden cameras), the Stasi of the EPO, the Investigative Unit (with roots in Afghanistan among much of the staff), there are claims that the fishing expedition (for sources/informants to the media) was a success. Coming from the types of people who boasted and bragged about the 'value' of confessions derived or obtained through torture (among other tricks), this is just grand. The evidence may be very weak, if not partly fabricated (like claims of WoMD in Iraq), but one judge was illegally suspended last year. A case is being put together not by an independent, external entity. The EPO is its own police state (EPOnia), totally loyal to Battistelli, by design. If a scapegoat makes Battistelli looks better, then so be it. Framing (at least partial) probably would not be out of scope.

"The evidence may be very weak, if not partly fabricated (like claims of WoMD in Iraq), but one judge was illegally suspended last year."Important call for action to all readers: If you have come under abuse from the EPO, the Investigative Unit (I.U.), or some external legal firm, please get in touch with us confidentially.

As far as we can tell, the Stasi (I.U.) is now mentally abusing a person whose identity we know. They are defaming an alleged whistleblower*, trying to force his colleagues to fire him (for now they refuse to, they stand by him). It's a divide-and-rule strategy, ultimately intended (as some believe) to crush the independence of the boards or the boards as a whole. No wonder so many people commit suicides there, considering what is done behind closed to them (under menacing gag orders).

The above information can be further elucidated by numerous comments from Merpel's latest blog post.

"According to information," wrote one person, "the president had planned to publish about the judge right after the decision expected to be taken by the Admin C. (this course of action is minuted after a recent PD mac meeting)

"Only the Admin C. did not take the "right" decision and Battistelli could not let go since he his the master, the grand master !

"According to the good old principle calomniez, calomniez, il en restera toujours quelque chose, Battistelli - who of course does not have anything to do directly with the dissemination of information - sent his faithful VP1 a man you can always rely upon for a coup bas - to meet with the journalist of the Financieele Dagblad (plus the new DirCom ex from Transparency international and a couple of useless management pets...)."

"EPOGATE," one person dubbed it, adding that: "Should this be true, the organised revelation to journalists of the contents of a confidential dossier - including accusations which obviously were not even pursued by the disciplinary committee - would not only be a first-grade scandal, but also amount to a criminal act against the concerned employee.

“They did not even try to hide that they were giving the confidential contents of the investigation to the press BEFORE THE EBA GAVE ITS OPINION?”
      --Anonymous
"How long will the AC now be able to oppose an official investigation in this action and the lifting of both the president€´s his second fiddles' immunity?"

Going into all caps mode, one person wrote: "ARE YOU KIDDING ME? IS THIS TRUE? They did not even try to hide that they were giving the confidential contents of the investigation to the press BEFORE THE EBA GAVE ITS OPINION?"

Watch some earlier comments, such as:

Battistelli proposed to violate the European Patent Convention and attempted to make the Administrative Council complicit this wrongdoing. Now Battistelli has lost face and has no legitimacy after his major failure during the AC.

EPO staff is bound by the EPC, but they have to work under a President who does not respect it. It's astounding.

The cynicism of the EPO communiqué is appalling. The social study "in close co-operation with the President" will end up like the union recognition project going nowhere as slowly as possible.

And what about the investigation of staff representatives launched by Elodie Bergot (PD HR) with the help of Control Risks? Did the AC tell BB to stop it? Will Elizabeth Hardon be dismissed? And what about all the other SUEPO executives?

[...]

I fully agree with you on the social audit : this will be a mere smokescreen controlled (since it is organised) by Battistelli's closest associates : the Board 28

As a staff rep I feel deeeeeeeply down tonight since they do not seem willing to review the way reforms are ill-designed, much less harshly implemenented.

See you at suicide nr 6


Battistelli's internal communiqué is quite horrible. It's a personal attack disguised as 'information'. It's only backed by what seems to be embedded 'journalism'.

"I just discovered the new article in the Süddeutsche Zeitung," wrote to us one person, "and it is something of a bombshell."

"The writers claim to have seen the investigation report."

So this isn't really independent reporting, it's just an expedition from Battistelli's goons, trying to co-opt the media.

"I don't know what to make of it," wrote another person to us. "Master tactical stroke by Battistelli, or simply the same megacrap taken up to the next level?"

"I will have to look at the article with a rested head to try to understand what's going on, and try to find out what happened. I wouldn't be surprised by a new wave of repression beginning beginning this week."

Well, judging by the above, it is exactly what's going on and later this month we shall shed some more light on that. It's a lot broader a campaign of repression than what's visible on the surface. People are just being gagged.

"If he is a real whistleblower," told us another person about the judge, it "could make a big difference: there are increasing numbers of structures to help whistleblowers" (among them some European groups).

This judge/IT specialist is accused of speaking to colleagues about Željko Topić (see the criminal lawsuits), but EPO apparently goes further by accusing him of speaking to the media or orchestrating something a lot larger than that (which may be a bogus accusation and even if truthful an allegation, such an action may as well be justified). Now there is a character assassination campaign because his board of appeal colleagues and the Administrative Council refuse to fire him (EPO cannot do so directly, as it would be against the law and would thus result in an embarrassment, maybe even a lawsuit). We believe he is now on 'house ban' with his salary halved. Battistelli wants to pull the plug on life support, too. Perhaps it's time for Battistelli to quit pretending to have nothing to do with suicides. "See you at suicide nr 6," wrote a commenter yesterday. ______ * If he is not a whistleblower per se, then he is one who speaks truth to power (or to colleagues) and gets punished for it. Retaliation by a smear campaign, plus an apparent collusion with the media in this case, serves as a deterrence and scares many others.

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