Bonum Certa Men Certa

The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part XXI: The Balkan League – The Doyen and His “Protégée”

Series parts:

  1. The EPO's Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part I: Let the Sunshine In!
  2. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part II: A “Unanimous” Endorsement?
  3. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part III: Three Missing Votes
  4. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part IV: The Founding States
  5. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part V: Germany Says “Ja”
  6. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part VI: A Distinct Lack of Dutch Courage
  7. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part VII: Luxembourgish Laxity
  8. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part VIII: Perfidious Albion and Pusillanimous Hibernia
  9. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part IX: More Holes Than Swiss Cheese
  10. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part X: Introducing the Controversial Christian Bock
  11. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part XI: “General Bock” - Battistelli's Swiss Apprentice?
  12. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part XII: The French Connection
  13. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part XIII: Battistelli's Iberian Facilitators - Spain
  14. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part XIV: Battistelli's Iberian Facilitators - Portugal
  15. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part XV: Et Tu Felix Austria…
  16. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part XVI: The Demise of the Austrian Double-Dipper
  17. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part XVII: The Non-Monolithic Nordic Bloc
  18. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part XVIII: Helsinki's Accord
  19. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part IXX: The Baltic States
  20. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part XX: The Visegrád Group
  21. YOU ARE HERE ☞ The Balkan League – The Doyen and His “Protégée”


Balkan delegations
Balkan delegations that voted in favour of Battistelli's "Strike Regulations".
Ljiljana Kuterovac (HR), Safet Emruli (MK), Safet Sula (AL), Gábor Varga (RO) and Kamen Veselinov (BG).
Bottom right: Kuterovac and her "mentor" Željko Topić at the WIPO General Assembly (2010).



Summary: The EPO's circle of corruption in the Balkan region will be the focus of today's (and upcoming) coverage, showing some of the controversial enablers of Benoît Battistelli and António Campinos, two deeply corrupt French officials who rapidly drive the Office into the ground for personal gain (at Europe's expense!)

In this part we begin an in-depth examination of the "captured" delegations from the Balkan region and how they contributed to the rubber-stamping of Battistelli's "Strike Regulations" at the 136th meeting of the Administrative Council in June 2013.



"The links between Battistelli and his Croatian "bulldog", Željko Topić, go back at least as far as 2008 when, as heads of their respective national IP Offices, they signed a bilateral agreement between France and Croatia."It has long been an open secret that the "Balkan Express" connection was a vital cog in Battistelli’s pan-European crony network.

The links between Battistelli and his Croatian "bulldog", Željko Topić, go back at least as far as 2008 when, as heads of their respective national IP Offices, they signed a bilateral agreement between France and Croatia.

"Back in June 2013, the Croatian delegation was headed by Topić's "protégée" Ljiljana Kuterovac, who was assisted by her deputy Ana Rački Marinković."Topić - the self-proclaimed "doyen of IP in the region" - was reputed to be useful for drumming up support amongst the "Balkan League" delegations from the territory of the former Yugoslavia and its neighbouring states.

Back in June 2013, the Croatian delegation was headed by Topić's "protégée" Ljiljana Kuterovac, who was assisted by her deputy Ana Rački Marinković.

On that occasion, Topić and his "accomplice" Kuterovac were able to "capture" an additional four votes for Battistelli from the following EPO member states:

● North Macedonia: head of delegation, Safet Emruli; ● Albania: head of delegation, Safet Sula; ● Bulgaria: head of delegation, Kamen Veselinov; and ● Romania: head of delegation, Gábor Varga.

Croatia's delegation
The Croatian delegation: Ljiljana Kuterovac and her deputy Ana Rački Marinković at the WIPO General Assembly in 2013.



Battistelli's gratitude towards his Croatian "bulldog" was evident from the way in which he used the 136th meeting of the Council to present the delegates with the outcome of an “internal investigation” which had been stage-managed for the purpose of whitewashing Topić.

"...even the Croatian government was starting to be wary of Battistelli and they only sent a junior (deputy) minister to greet him."Some years later, in December 2016 (warning: epo.org link), Battistelli turned up in Zagreb for a ceremony to mark the 25th anniversary of the founding of Croatia's State Intellectual Property Office (SIPO). He used the occasion to plug the UPC and to pose for a photo-op with Topić and Kuterovac. By that time even the Croatian government was starting to be wary of Battistelli and they only sent a junior (deputy) minister to greet him.

Battistelli, Topic, and Kuterovac
Battistelli flanked by Topić and Kuterovac meeting with Deputy Minister of Science and Education Krešo Zadro in Zagreb for a ceremony to mark the 25th anniversary of the founding of Croatian SIPO.



It would be naïve to suppose that the departure of Battistelli and Topić from the EPO means that the "Balkan Express" has gone away.

"It would be naïve to suppose that the departure of Battistelli and Topić from the EPO means that the "Balkan Express" has gone away."It is still very much alive under Battistelli's successor - albeit in a modified form. The current EPO President Campinos is fully aware of the benefits of cultivating his connections to this vital hub of the "European IP Network".

That might explain why he hasn't taken any action to sort out the ongoing affair surrounding the "doyen of IP in the region", former EPO Vice-President Željko Topić, who continues to be permitted to pass himself off as an authorised European Patent Attorney despite the fact that he doesn't appear to have passed the European Qualifying Examination. According to Article 134 (2) (c) of the European Patent Convention, this is a mandatory requirement for recognition as a professional representative before the EPO.

"In the meantime, Topić is now listed as a member of the epi Council."As readers of Techrights will recall, Topić's name mysteriously appeared on the EPO’s list of professional representatives in March 2019. In the meantime, Topić is now listed as a member of the epi Council. This is the governing body of the Institute of Professional Representatives before the European Patent Office (epi), which is the professional body representing all European Patent Attorneys.

Kuterovac and Campinos
Just like his predecessor, Campinos is aware of the benefits of cultivating the "Balkan Express" connection.



It came as no great surprise to see Campinos turning up in Zagreb in February 2020 (warning: epo.org link) to attend an international conference on "challenges in intellectual property".

"In the next part we will turn our attention to the delegations representing North Macedonia and Albania."On this occasion, he was accompanied by an "EPO delegation" which included the Vice President in charge of International and Legal Affairs, the notorious Christoph Ernst. The duo were seen paying their respects to Kuterovac and her supervising Minister, Blaženka Divjak.

EPO and Blazenka Divjak
Campinos and Ernst paying their respects to Croatian Minister of Science and Education, Blaženka Divjak, and SIPO Director Kuterovac at an international conference held in Zagreb (February 2020).



In the next part we will turn our attention to the delegations representing North Macedonia and Albania.

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