The Netherlands' attorney general wants Europe to take on The Pirate Bay
There's just no relief for The Pirate Bay.
The torrent site is embroiled in a court case in the Netherlands – one that the country's attorney general wants to take to the European Court of Justice, the Register reports.
Anti-piracy group BREIN has been trying to force Dutch ISPs Ziggo and XS4All to block access to The Pirate Bay since 2010. Initially, the group won the case, and forced all Dutch ISPs to block the site. But Ziggo and XS4All managed to successfully argue in 2014 that since blocking the site is useless (when authorities have shut down one version, another has always appeared) they shouldn't be forced to do so.
BREIN has since taken the issue to the country's Supreme Court, and it could go even further.
The Netherlands' attorney general Robert Van Peursem wrote on Friday (in Dutch) that the ECJ needs to issue its own ruling on whether The Pirate Bay is distributing copyrighted content before BREIN's case can continue. If the ECJ decides that it isn't, Van Peursem continued, the European court needs to decide whether ISPs can be ordered to block the site on other grounds.
Van Peursem's word isn't legally binding, but the Dutch courts tend to follow the attorney general's suggestions, the Register report noted. And a European court ruling against the site could give anti-piracy groups and courts in the rest of Europe ammunition against The Pirate bay in its current form, which carries on without its founders. The site is now being run by administrators and moderators.
Fredrik Neij, the last of The Pirate bay's founders to serve a prison sentence issued by a Swedish court, was released yesterday.