The Scots Law Student

The SLS : Life and trials of learning law in Scotland

Month: April, 2009

The Pirate Bay – illegal?

This came as a complete surprise to me and annoyingly I’m currently too busy to do anything nearly approaching researching it. I don’t think what they’ve gone to jail (facilitating the crimes (sharing of copyrighted material) of others) for is accurate or actually all that much of a crime and will watch for an appeal with great interest.  If it’s a crime to link to material to which someone, somewhere owns a copyright to then there’s a serious problem for the internet.  I possess the rights to the words on this blog, for example.  (Except the bit in the quotes, of course.)

On a personal level I was always slightly disappointed that the “Pirate Bay 4” (who were actually the parties of a test case which affects the entire modern, information linked world) were quite as light hearted as they were. Particularly some of the quotes they gave to the press – I believe it is easier to get behind figureheads for a cause if they don’t sound like they’ve just killed someone on Xbox Live.  That said, the law doesn’t apply differently to people who use “fail” as a noun and I still find the judgement surprising.

The Legality has come out with a great piece of legal journalism on the ruling and I highly recommend it:

The Pirate Bay Trial: Does Having a Treasure Map Make You a Pirate?

Written by: Brady Iandiorio
Researched by: Tracy Frazier and Steve Glista
Edited by: Jay D. Hall
Managing Editor: Kirk Strohman

Ian Tomlinson – G20 passerby death reveals death by internal bleeding

In between screeds of frantic university work I’ve been working on a post most academic on the various civil and criminal liabilities (there’s a whole lot of them) that potentially arise as a result of Ian Tomlinson’s death minutes after he was body slammed by a police officer. Unfortunately, all this work has turned to so much ash when it was revealed that the initial post mortem was highly suspicious and the pathologist in question has actually been warned about his results and it now appears that he died of internal bleeding and not a heart attack, as was initially decided.

This leads to questions of traumatic and non-traumatic haemorrhage and the causal link between these and his death as well. It still appears to be a very persuasive case of manslaughter (culpable homicide to the non-Sassenach) by applying the egg shell rule. It certainly would be if it was anywhere than at the hands of a strongly empowered riot control officer and that’s where the complexity comes from.