2006-06-30

Håkan Roswall compares Piratbyrån with terrorists, and the Pirate Bay with... something even worse

This is translated from Rasmus Fleischer of Copyriot, regarding the juridical aftermaths concerning the raid on the company PRQ, who had all their customers raided about a month ago. Some of their customers have had their equipment returned, some have not, and their own equipment, the equipment used for company administration, is still being held by order of prosecutor Håkan Roswall, without any given reason.

Now I've heard, by word of mouth from a person that was present in court in Stockholm on the Wednesday, what prosecutor Håkan Roswall said at the first negotiations that will be held regarding the seizure of various servers in relation with the Pirate Bay raid.

The company PRQ wanted their four computers back, computers used for book keeping and keeping tabs of customers (also necessary for PRQ to be able to pay their taxes). Håkan Roswall refuses and insists that the computers are to remain locked away for at least another year. He claims that this is important for the investigation.

When the court heard this case, it was thus time for Håkan Roswall to motivate his decisions. How did he do it? Well, first he allegedly talked about what bittorrent is in general for up about half an hour, and (nobody understands why) how virtual networking works. A guess is that the jurors were completely confused. Then Håkan Roswall said, according to what I have had told to me, literarily this:

I don't know how to say this, but one could say that Piratbyrån is like the IRA and the Pirate Bay is like IRAs armed forces.


It's stunning.

The ignorance of the prosecutor is one thing: the IRA is the "armed forces" of the Sinn Féin party, which should be part of anyone's general knowledge. What is more stunning is why he involved Piratbyrån in this at all. The negotiations was about the company PRQ, and the alledged necessity for the investigation to not return their accounts (not even a copy).

The worst thing, however, is what Håkan Roswall obviously is trying to say: the work to influence the public opinion that Piratbyrån is doing is to be compared to terrorism (and the Pirate Bay is terrorism squared). The fact that Piratbyrån is arguing that indexing services such as the Pirate Bay has an obvious right to exist, means that freedon of expression can be sorted away.

PRQ have appealed to a higher instance, but before that, the demands from more people and companies to get their computer equipment returned will be tried in the district court. Also the seizure of Piratbyrån's server will be brought up to trial, hopefully as soon as next week. But expect that Håkan Roswall will refuse to give an inch. This is of course a political question, where pressure has to be applied from as many directions as possible, if we are not to accept that prosecutors are going to be able to arbitrarily decide that one online voice or another are to be silenced for an unspecified timespan and without any suspicion of crime.

7 comments:

zqad said...

A clarification; Roswall did not talk about wireless networks, but about virtual networks. A bit more understanable, but it still has nothing to do with PRQs economic system.

Thaumiel said...

Oh. That's a stupid mistake of translation, thanks for correcting. :)

Anonymous said...

I wasn't aware Piratbyrån and The Pirate Bay were fighting to reunify and free sweden.

Thaumiel said...

To be perfectly honest, nor was I. All in all, I would have to say that this prosecutor is again showing an example of bad judgement, ironically for a man in his position, and with the intelligence he obviously possess.

Anonymous said...

lol:P

Anonymous said...

And tbh... the IRA aren't the "armed forces" of Sinn Féin. At least not openly.
Sinn Féin are the go-between for the Goverment and the IRA, they're politians. Which is worse, imo.

Thaumiel said...

Actually, from what I know, the IRA has all but evaporated. There is peace in Northern Ireland (not said "lack of violence", but peace at least), and the IRA hasn't been operative or had any use of being operative for a very long time. British authorities said in september last year they regarded the IRA as non-existent. Good riddance, though.