MONDAY, 31 MARCH 2008
Poland: are they fencing?
The Polish website onet.pl reports that the Supreme Court of Republic of Poland will have to decide whether buying counterfeit goods is understood as fencing. This important interpretational problem arose after the recent amendments of Polish Act on Industrial Property Law (the IPL). Article 305(1) of the IPL provides that:
"(...) Anyone marking goods with a counterfeit trade mark, registered trade mark for which one does not have the right to use, for the purpose of introducing them on the market or anyone who is making a turnover of goods bearing such trade mark, shall be liable to a fine, limitation of freedom or imprisonment for a period of up to two years".However Article 291(1) of the Polish Penal Code says:
Whoever acquires property obtained by means of a prohibited act, or assists in its disposition, or receives such property or assists in the concealment thereof shall be subject to the penalty of deprivation of liberty for a term of between 3 months and 5 years". The Republic of Poland is a Civil law country and there are no binding precedents. Also, the Supreme Court's resolution is only binding for the court that referred with a specific question but in practice Polish courts often apply rules that were interpreted by the Supreme Court.
Posted by: Tomasz Rychlicki @ 13.00
Tags: Counterfeiting, Polish courts, Polish Supreme Court,