ISP Must Reveal Who Runs SweTorrents BitTorrent Tracker

A Swedish appeals court has upheld an earlier ruling by a district court which ordered an ISP to hand over the personal details of a torrent site operator. ISP TeliaSonera faces a 750,000 kronor ($96,500) fine if it does not reveal who is behind the SweTorrents BitTorrent tracker. The ISP may appeal the decision.

swetorrentsIn July 2009, four movie companies applied to a Swedish court requesting that it force an ISP to hand over the personal details of one of its clients. The application was made under the IPRED legislation introduced in April of the same year, which made it easier to track down and identify alleged copyright infringers.

Svensk Filmindustri, Pan Vision, Filmlance and Yellow Bird in conjunction with Antipiratbyrån (APB) said that the SweTorrents BitTorrent tracker had made five copyright movies available to the public via their site, some of them in advance of their commercial release. To this end they applied to the Södertörn District Court to force ISP TeliaSonera to hand over the details of the account holder behind the site.

In December the Södertörn District Court announced its decision that TeliaSonera must hand over the name and address of the SweTorrents operator to Antipiratbyrån. The ISP didn’t want to breach customer privacy so easily, so it launched an appeal.

Yesterday the Court of Appeal panel – which included forthcoming Pirate Bay appeal judges Christina Boutz and Ulrika Ihrfelt – found that there was probably cause for the existence of copyright infringement and therefore decided to uphold the earlier decision of the District Court.

Not only does TeliaSonera have to pay the movie companies’ costs of 60,000 kronor ($7,715) but failure to comply with the decision will result in it collecting a 750,000 kronor ($96,500) fine.

The company has until June 7th to decide whether to appeal.

“We have not decided yet [whether to appeal], but it begins to honestly get a bit tedious dealing with IPRED,” Patrik Hiselius, Director of Public Affairs at TeliaSonera, told AFB. “We would prefer to sit and talk about film premieres being available on customers’ home sofas to curb copyright violations.”

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