Interesting court case re:ART in pubs-Sky loses appeal

EDW

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#1
Thanks to Kanelone on LJ's forum.
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FROM PAUL DIXON LAWER
Fri Mar 24, 2006 11:14pm



Bulletin Board


Live Satellite Football – A Landmark Decision




While he was the licensee of the Fisherman’s Inn at Littleborough, near Rochdale, Brian Gannon purchased a legitimate foreign satellite system and subscription so that his patrons could enjoy live F.A. Premier League football.



The patrons of the Fisherman’s enjoyed watching Chelsea v Birmingham City at 3:00pm on 21st August 2004, but Brian found himself being prosecuted by Mr Raymond Hoskin of the Federation Against Copyright Theft (“FACT”) for allegedly receiving a programme included in a broadcasting service provided from a place in the United Kingdom with intent to avoid payment of a charge applicable to the reception of that programme.



Having been found guilty by Rochdale Magistrates Court, Brian appealed to Bolton Crown Court.



On Friday 24th March 2006, HHJ Warnock, sitting with two lay Justices, upheld Brian’s appeal. In delivering the court’s decision, HHJ Warnock said that not only was the court satisfied that Brian had not been dishonest, but that FACT had not even established vital generic elements of the alleged offence.



Commenting after the appeal hearing, MBC’s head of Licensing & Regulatory Affairs, Paul Dixon, said:-



“ This is a landmark case. Not only is it the first significant legal authority on this emerging area of law, but it reinforces my view that prosecutions such as this are being driven by the F.A.P.L. and Sky to protect their commercial monopolies. Whilst this case was about a “closed period” match, the generic principles apply to all live satellite broadcasts of FAPL matches. It is a benchmark decision on the issue of criminal liability.”





MBC’s Licensing & Regulatory team can be contacted at:-

pdixon@molesworths.co.uk

DDI – 01706 767420

Mobile – 07798 520657
 

rolfw

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#2
Interesting, would be more interesting with a little more detail. Can't see this being the end of the case though, bound to be an appeal.
 

EDW

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rolfw said:
Interesting, would be more interesting with a little more detail. Can't see this being the end of the case though, bound to be an appeal.
This was an appeal from the Mags. so that's it for the prosecution I think.


Also..........09/03/2006 11:08

Written by: Tony Halstead

The FA Premier League has suffered a rare court defeat over a pub screening of Premiership football in the Saturday afternoon “closed period”.

Magistrates in Bolton said pub manager Ian Moss, of the Saddle, in Farnworth, Greater Manchester, did not personally act dishonestly by showing the match because he ran the premises on behalf of the owners.

No bearing
Media Protection Services (MPS), which brought the prosecution for the Premier League, said this was an isolated case with no bearing on the legality of closed-period screenings.

Solicitor Joe Egan, who defended Moss, said the court ruled his client had not been personally dishonest because he was a manager running the premises for the owners.

No fee applicable
The Saddle is operated by a small firm, Anchor Inns, based at Westhoughton near Bolton.

“My client did not intentionally avoid paying a fee because the Premier League does not negotiate fees with individual pubs, so no fee was applicable. He did not deliberately avoid paying it,” said Egan.

MPS managing director Ray Hoskin said he accepted the court’s decision but that it carries no weight in the overall legal position.

“It is only the second time in two years that a case has gone against us and our position is that any licensee screening a Premiership game during the closed Saturday afternoon period is doing so illegally,” Hoskin added.
 

rolfw

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#4
That could be only the first appeal there is the High court yet.

The second case is a loophole.
 

RedDevil_UK

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#5
Remember this well, i live about 1.5 miles from that Pub

Caused a bit of a stir at the time.
 
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