We have received an anonymous email from examiners of the EPO in response to our podcast episode 20 “Unrest at the EPO”. The Email reads as follows:
Dear Dr. Claessen,
We refer to your report about “Unrest at the EPO” in the recent IP Fridays podcast of 23 January 2015.
This was a very interesting piece but it seems to have contained a minor factual error:
“Employees frequently say that his leadership style is autocratic and single-sided and one event really heated up the emotions recently on the 3rd of December, 2014, a member of the Board of Appeal was escorted from his office by police at the behest of the President.”
According to our information, the police were not involved in this matter.
The person in question was in fact escorted from the EPO premises by the so-called EPO “Investigative Unit”, a secretive Stasi-like unit established by and under the exclusive control and authority of the EPO President:
The EPO Investigative Unit and its highly controversial investigative procedure were established unilaterally by the EPO President and have never been formally approved by the Administrative Council (contrary to the provisions of Article 33 EPC).
Normally national police (in this case the German/Bavarian ones) have no access to EPO premises under the terms of the Protocol on Privileges and Immunities of the EPO:
German police would only normally be able to enter EPO premises upon invitation of the President and if there was suspicion of a criminal act which does not appear to be so in the present case.
In the meantime, we wanted to bring to your attention another potentially major scandal at the EPO which seems to be about to break. We draw your attention to the attached verdict from the Municipal Criminal Court of Zagreb dated 28 January 2015.
It concerns a defamation lawsuit being pursued by a Vice-President of the EPO.
It seems that he lost this case and according to our information he is currently under investigation by the Public Prosecutor in Zagreb in relation to a number of matters including charges of bribing a former government Minister in Croatia.
We also attach an English translation of a recent article published by the leading Danish daily newspaper Jyllands-Posten on 29 January 2015. The article was published following a protest march by EPO staff to the Danish consulate in Munich.
Here are the mentioned documents:
We invite the president of the EPO to present his views.
Happy listening to our podcast!
Ken & Rolf