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R (Vuciterni and Alsat UK Ltd) v Brent Magistrates? Court and Brent and Harrow Trading Standards Service [2012] EWCA 2140 (Admin)

Case Summary  |  Judgment  |  25 July 2012


Martin Howe QC appeared for the claimant and James Mellor QC for the defendant trading standards service in this application for judicial review where the Administrative Court (Davis LJ and Irwin J) quashed a warrant which had been issued by a magistrate allowing its officers to enter Mr Vuciterni's home and his company's business premises in order to search for evidence of sale of satellite decoder cards imported from Albania. The trading standards officer who had applied for the warrant had alleged that Mr Vuciterni was guilty of offences of dealing in unauthorised decoder cards contrary to section 297A of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 but had failed to make the magistrate aware of the decisions of the High Court Chancery Division (Kitchin J), of the High Court (Adminisrative Court), or of the Opinion of the Advocate General in FAPL v QC Leisure/Murphy v Media Protection Services Joined Cases C-403/08 & C-429/08, all of which indicated that using a lawfully issued satellited decoder card in a different country contrary to the wishes of the broadcaster or its licensors would not amount to an offence under section 297A.