05.13.21

The EPO’s War on Justice and Assault on the Law — Part 5: Battistelli’s “Swedish Chef”

Posted in Europe, Law, Patents at 11:46 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Previously in this series:

The “Swedish Chef” Carl Josefsson
Carl Josefsson – Battistelli‘s Swedish Chef

Summary: The EPO‘s ‘courts’ are controlled by the people whom they’re supposed to judge on; this has been the case for at least half a decade

As we saw in the last part, Battistelli’s “reform” of the Boards of Appeal in 2016 raised a lot of unanswered questions, in particular concerning its effects on the independence of the Boards.

The members of the Boards were upset and protested about their impending deportation to Haar. Here’s a concisely-put reminder from AMBA: [PDF]

AMBA - Resolution on Haar

But there was one lucky beneficiary of this dubious “legal fudge”, Carl Josefsson, who had the honour of being the first appointee to the newly created position of “President of the Boards of Appeal”.

“It is very clear that Josefsson’s appointment at the EPO was vetted by Battistelli and Kongstad and there is every reason to believe that they chose their man with great care.”Josefsson’s appointment was announced by the Administrative Council in December 2016 (warning: epo.org link) and he took up his new job in March 2017.

Before moving to the EPO, Josefsson was a Senior Judge at the Svea Court of Appeal in Stockholm.

He also played a leading role in “Team UPC” as a member of the UPC Advisory Panel between 2013 and 2016. In this capacity he was involved in the preselection and training of UPC judges. (Warning: epo.org link)

From the document at hand: [PDF]

Sweden UPC 2016

It is very clear that Josefsson’s appointment at the EPO was vetted by Battistelli and Kongstad and there is every reason to believe that they chose their man with great care.

“Nothing that has happened at the Boards of Appeal since then would call that assessment into question.”It is worth recalling that Battistelli had ensured that Rule 12a of the EPC (warning: epo.org link) was drafted to give himself a de facto veto over the appointment of the President of the Boards of Appeal:

The President of the Boards of Appeal shall be appointed by the Administrative Council on a joint proposal made by the Committee established under Rule 12c, paragraph 1, and the President of the European Patent Office.

For this reason it is apparent that Josefsson could not have secured the position as President of the Boards of Appeal without Battistelli’s endorsement.

Already back in 2019 it was reported that Josefsson was reckoned by EPO insiders to be a “safe pair of hands” who did his best to please his political masters and someone who could be counted upon to do his best to avoid “upsetting the apple cart”.

Nothing that has happened at the Boards of Appeal since then would call that assessment into question.

As a matter of fact, it is very clear that Josefsson’s performance to date has been very much to the satisfaction of his overlords on the Administrative Council.

“As a matter of fact, it is very clear that Josefsson’s performance to date has been very much to the satisfaction of his overlords on the Administrative Council.”This can be gauged from the fact that his appointment – which was not due to expire at the end of February 2022 – has already been pre-emptively renewed for another five years.

The renewal was announced by the Administrative Council in December 2020. (Warning: epo.org link)

This means that unless something unexpected happens, Josefsson intends to remain at the helm of the Boards of Appeal until at least the end of February 2027.

Since he took up his position at the EPO, Josefsson has given the distinct impression of being a “bought man” who knows what side his bread is buttered on.

However, a number of details which have emerged about his previous life in Sweden suggest that he wasn’t always such a vapid conformist.

In the next part, we will present some interesting revelations about Josefsson’s earlier career before he joined Team Battistelli at the EPO.

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