The Swedish Radio went digging for information about Tomas Norström the judge in The Pirate Bay case and found a few unpleasant facts about the judge:
He is a member of the Swedish Association for Copyright a society for spreading knowledge about, and developing the legal field of, copyright. He has worked for Stiftelsen .SE the organisation responsible for Swedens top-level domain name. Monique Wadstedt, the film companies representative during the Pirate Bay trial also worked there. Finally he is on the board of the Swedish Organisation for Industrial Design Protection.
So I would prefer to praise a judge for taking an interest in copyright law so that takes care of his membership in the association for copyright. That he worked for the same organisation as one of the lawyers involved in the case may need some explaining – what did he do there? when did he work there? what was his relationship to Monique Wadstedt?
The final one is more damning he is on the board for an organisation working to strengthen the protection of industrial design and also copyright – this is not good.
How impartial can a judge be? Should his interest in specific legal topics be seen as a negative or a positive if he is chosen to preside over a case. Naturally he should have taken up this with his supervisor prior to the case. Nomatter what, the focus is moving away from law to poltics. – the trial just got dirty.