“Today, NT-K issued a Spanish-language press release announcing the filing of an indictment against Apple for the alleged act of extortion,” Florian Mueller reports for FOSS Patents. “NT-K’s owners filed those charges with the office of the district attorney (public prosecutor) for the Valencia region.”

“I believe NT-K’s Android-based tablet computers didn’t represent an act of counterfeiting in the narrow sense of the word: NT-K wasn’t building iPad clones. At the most, they may have infringed a Community design, an EU-wide design-related right (comparable to a U.S. design patent), that belongs to Apple,” Mueller reports. “In my view, any dispute over that type of infringement should be resolved under civil law without raising, directly or indirectly, issues under criminal law.”

Mueller reports, “But this goes both ways. I understand that NT-K was offended by having to defend itself in a criminal proceeding that was more or less directly triggered by Apple asking customs authorities for help against an alleged counterfeiter. However, that doesn’t make Apple’s aggressive enforcement activities a crime. For now I don’t see evidentiary support for the claim that Apple sought to ‘extort’ NT-K and possibly other small companies.”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Fred Mertz” for the heads up.]

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Spanish court order dismissing criminal case against NT-K tablet maker explained – November 3, 2011
Apple loses iPad design lawsuit against small Spanish tablet computer maker NT-K – November 2, 2011