”This ruling is absurd. I am disappointed that the court is so uninterested to dissect and look through all the legal comings and goings in one of the world’s most watched court cases of all time,” said Carl Lundström’s lawyer Per E Samuelsson to daily Dagens Nyheter (DN).
Lundström, along with Gottfrid Svartholm Warg, Peter Sunde and Fredrik Neij were convicted in April 2009 on charges of being accessories to copyright violations. they were sentenced to a year’s imprisonment apiece and a combined fine of 30 million kronor ($4.4 million).
All four appealed their sentences, with the Svea Court of Appeal ruling in November to uphold the convictions, with the exception of Svartholm Warg who was absent due to illness.
The appeals court however reduced Lundström’s sentence to four months and increased the damages to a total of 46 million kronor.
Since Svartholm Warg missed the hearing, the court never reviewed his case and as the time allowed for him to petition the court to hear his appeal expired, the original sentence handed down in 2009 has become legally binding.
It gained legal force in October last year.
The three remaining pirates then petitioned Sweden’s Supreme Court for leave to appeal.
But on Wednesday, the court announced that the defendants’ request had been denied and that the appeal’s court sentence therefore will stand.
”A society ruled by law has now had its say and this is a breaking point in a drawn out discussion about copyright on the internet. The highest court has made it clear that anyone who takes any part in these crimes, even those who supply the internet connection, will have to face up to their responsibility,” said Henrik Pontén, legal counsel for Sweden’s Anti-Piracy Bureau (Antipiratbyrån), in a statement.
Pontén flagged the imminent action against some 150 illegal file-sharing services with ties to Sweden.
”Legal action will be taken against anyone who contribute to these offences in any way,” said Pontén to TT.
The sentenced pirates have requested that the Supreme Court would wait for a preliminary ruling but the court wrote in its ruling that ”there are no such doubts regarding the interpretation”.
”This was highly surprising from a legal aspect. Everyone knows how hard it is to be granted the leave to appeal in the Supreme Court. But if any case would get the leave to appeal, I would have said it was this case,” said Jonas Nilsson, lawyer for Fredrik Neij, told TT.
Founded in 2003, The Pirate Bay made it possible to skirt copyright fees and share music, film and computer game files using BitTorrent technology, or peer-to-peer links offered on the site.