Spanish court order dismissing criminal case against NT-K tablet maker explained

“Yesterday I reported on a Spanish court proceeding involving Apple’s iPad-related Community design and a small Spanish company named Nuevas Tecnologías y Energías Català marketing Android-based tablets under its NT-K brand,” Florian Mueller reports for FOSS Patents.

“I did my initial reporting based on NT-K’s corporate blog post and reports in reputable Spanish media such as Expansión,” Mueller reports. “In addition, I have talked to people in the industry and received help from someone tracking down the Spanish court document that notified the general public of the dismissal of the case. Based on what the document says, I think the implications of this case for Apple’s enforcement of its design-related rights are probably much less wide-ranging than it initially appeared.”

Mueller reports, “It seems that even in Spain Apple could still assert its iPad design-related rights under civil law. Also, the nature of Apple’s involvement may have been limited to that of an initial complainant (who according to NT-K also filed an indictment) as opposed to that of a party litigating a case all the way through. That’s what my sources say, and it’s possible… A criminal case can be dismissed because there was no wrongdoing, but it can also be dismissed if the court didn’t consider the facts to meet the criteria for a criminal act, which includes a criminal intent. In other words, a finding of no crime is not the same as a finding of no infringement of a valid intellectual property right.”

Much more in the full article here.

Related article:
Apple loses iPad design lawsuit against small Spanish tablet computer maker NT-K – November 2, 2011


    1. That’s a bit unfair. It’s a Spainish court saying that this particular criminal prosecution did not meet their test of criminal intent. The article is explaining that Apple still has legal avenues to sue under civil statutes like patent infringements and trade dress issues, as they are with Samsung and HTC. The mistake with this particular case was that it began as criminal prosecution.

  1. I take it that it would be safe to assume that every time a US court ruled against a foreign firm they are automatically protecting the interests of the US firm involved?

    Grow up for god’s sake. Not everyone and everything is automatically anti-American. But considering the type of paranoia being displayed by the average Yank don’t be too surprised that the rest of the world really doesn’t give a damn about how you feel anymore.

    1. Not everyone is anti-American, but strong biases do exist in most parts of the world. Take the Amanda Knox case in Italy as a recent example. I could cite many examples. I tell my kids when travelling abroad, pray you never have to defend your self in a foreign court. This is coming from a guy who’s travelled to nearly 60 different countries.

  2. I’m as unlearned as most anyone about legal affairs, but even to me this seemed like apples and oranges on two different legal fronts- criminal and civil. Of course, IP law is about as byzantine as it gets, and then to mix in international law? The mind boggles.

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