50% of Charges Against Pirate Bay Dropped
There has been high drama on the second day of the Pirate Bay trial. Due to serious shortcomings in the prosecution evidence, around 50% of the charges in the case are going to have to be withdrawn. The defense describes it as a ’sensation’, seeing half of the charges being dropped on the second day.
pirate bayWhat has been shown in court today is that the prosecutor cannot prove that the .torrent files he is using as evidence actually used The Pirate Bay’s tracker. Many of the screenshots being used clearly state there is no connection to the tracker. Additionally, prosecutor Håkan Roswall didn’t adequately explain the function of DHT which allows for so called “trackerless” torrents.
The flaw in the evidence was pointed out by Fredrik Neij (TiAMO), who requested to comment on Roswall’s explanation of how BitTorrent actually works. Fredrik said that the prosecution misunderstood the technology, and told the court that the evidence doesn’t show that the Pirate Bay’s trackers are used.
This has resulted in prosecutor Håkan Roswall having to drop all charges relating to “assisting copyright infringement”, so the remaining charges are simply ‘assisting making available’. “Everything related to reproduction will be removed from the claim,” he said.
The defense was happy to see that already half of the charges were dropped during the morning session of the second day. “This is a sensation. It is very rare to win half the target in just one and a half days and it is clear that the prosecutor took strong note of what we said yesterday,” said defense lawyer Per E Samuelson.
Peter Althin, representing Peter Sunde said, “It is clear that this is an advantage for the accused.”
“EPIC WINNING LOL,” Peter himself later commented on Twitter.
IFPI was quick to release a statement where they try to spin the dropped charges into something good. “It’s a largely technical issue that changes nothing in terms of our compensation claims and has no bearing whatsoever on the main case against The Pirate Bay. In fact it simplifies the prosecutor’s case by allowing him to focus on the main issue, which is the making available of copyrighted works,” IFPI’s legal counsel said.
During the remainder of the morning session it was mostly prosecutor Håkan Roswall talking. Among other things he explained in detail how email works (made no mistakes there). Several details on the hardware that was taken during the raid in 2006 were discussed, as well as invoices and email conversations about server costs.
After the lunch break, around 1:30pm the court decided to end the day early. Tomorrow morning the prosecution will continue to build (or break) their case and on Thursday the defense will have its say.