After accusing thousands of Danes of illegally sharing movies using BitTorrent, Danish law firm Njord Law approached many for cash settlements despite their clients not holding the copyrights to the content in question. A partner in the firm and the firm itself have now been charged with serious fraud offenses dating back to April 2017.
So-called ‘copyright-trolling’ schemes targeting alleged users of BitTorrent have generated millions of dollars in settlements worldwide over the past 15 years.
In many cases, controversy is rarely far behind, with questions regularly raised over the legitimacy of the operations and those who help facilitate them. Over in Denmark, the situation has now reached boiling point, with a major law firm facing the wrath of the authorities.
Njord Law and Its Copyright Troll Partners
While ‘copyright trolling’ is often used to describe a company that targets alleged pirates en masse in order to extract cash settlements, the term is perhaps most accurately applied to those companies who seek payment for content to which they hold no rights. In Denmark, this can be perfectly applied to the partnerships between Copyright Management Services (CMS), MIRCOM, and prominent law firm Njord Law.
The former pair have connections to German-based BitTorrent tracking company MaverickEye and notorious international trolling operation Guardaley. They hired Njord Law to conduct their legal work in Denmark but with one major omission – neither company hold the copyrights to the works they are seeking to enforce. As a result, beginning last April hundreds of cases were kicked out of court.
Of course, taking a case to court is the last resort for copyright trolls, who prefer to extract easy cash payments from alleged pirates instead. In Denmark the position is no different and as a result, thousands of people settled out of court, parting with roughly 7,500 kroner (around US$1,200) each to make potential lawsuits disappear. That strategy is now coming home to roost.
Njord Law and Partner Charged With Fraud
With pressure mounting due to the number of cases being kicked out of court, last December there were signs that the authorities in Denmark were taking a keen interest in the copyright-trolling scheme sweeping the country. That has now been confirmed with a report from Berlingske (paywall) which reveals that Njord Law and partner lawyer Jeppe Brogaard Clausen have been charged by the authorities with serious fraud offenses… Via – TorrentFreak