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Mats Lewan, "Pirate Bay Defendants to Fight On"

Pirate Bay Defendants to Fight On Mats Lewan, CNet

The verdict has been handed down in the Pirate Bay file-sharing case, but the legal actions are far from done.

"The prosecutor leads 1-0 after the first round, but this will of course be appealed," said Per E. Samuelsson, defense lawyer for Carl Lundström, one of the four individuals sentenced in the Pirate Bay trial, according to the Swedish newspaper Dagens Nyheter.

Samuelsson calls the verdict a scandal. He also claims that his client will have to pay the damages ruled by the court--a total of $3.6 million--because the other three sentenced lack economic resources.

Lundstrцm has been financing a great part of Pirate Bay's operations. In the verdict, the court regards Lundstrцm as one member of a team. Peter Sunde, spokesman for the Pirate Bay and another of the four sentenced, found this odd.

"We barely know Lundstrцm," he said in an interview broadcast live on the Internet shortly after the verdict on Friday morning. (The interview starts in Swedish but continues in English at about 5:00 minutes in.)

"We cannot pay and we wouldn't pay," Sunde said, then wrote on a piece of paper and showed it to the camera: "I owe u 31,000,000 SEK -- just kidding." That's 30 million Swedish kronor, or $3.6 million.

Sunde continued: "Even if I had the money, I would rather burn everything I own."

Defense lawyer Jonas Nilsson, who represents Pirate Bay's Fredrik Neij, expressed surprised over the verdict--which he, like Samuelsson, called "just the first round."

"I had expected them to be cleared. $30 million Swedish kronor is an enormous amount. It's obvious that the court has followed the policy of the prosecutor. I think this is a clear case for the Supreme Court."

Another critic of the verdict is Christian Engstrцm, vice president in the Pirate Party political group that has a close connection to Pirate Bay.

"I recall what copyright organizations such as IFPI have said. That in case of a conviction, the verdict would be used as an argument to claim blocking of websites that deal with file sharing. That would correspond to banning books and newspapers," he said, according to the Swedish newspaper SvD.

The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry and other film and music industry groups saw the verdict as a victory for copyright holders.

Sunde seems to be the one who worries least about the court's ruling.

"You can look upon it as a movie, at the point when the heroes just have had the first real setback. But thanks Hollywood! You have taught us that in the end the good will win. And it will be a really big victory", he said.