World Intellectual Property Organization

Enforcement Advisory Body Examines Criminal Enforcement of Intellectual Property Rights

Geneva, November 5, 2007
PR/2007/528

The effectiveness of enforcing intellectual property (IP) rights under criminal law was the focus of discussions at a meeting of the World Intellectual Property Organization’s (WIPO) Advisory Committee on Enforcement (ACE) in Geneva from November 1 to 2, 2007. The Committee heard presentations on the criminal enforcement of IP laws in various jurisdictions and considered issues such as the scope and definition of IP crimes, investigation and initiation of criminal proceedings, jurisdiction, means of streamlining proceedings, evidentiary issues, sentencing options and level of penalties.  
 
“This session of the Advisory Committee on Enforcement has been extremely useful in identifying opportunities for improved coordination and cooperation among stakeholders to streamline criminal enforcement issues”, said Dr. Kamil Idris, Director General of WIPO. “The obvious commitment of all member states to join forces in developing effective strategies to counter these insidious problems of counterfeiting and piracy is most welcome” he added. 
 
The ACE was set up by WIPO member states in 2002 as a forum for discussion of enforcement matters with a mandate to cooperate with other intergovernmental organizations and the private sector to combat counterfeiting and piracy activities; undertake public education; provide assistance to member states on request; to coordinate national and regional training programs for all relevant stakeholders and the exchange of information on enforcement issues.
 
The Committee agreed that it should continue to provide a platform for the exchange of country experiences. The Chairman,  Mr. Hassan El-Badrawi, Assistant Minister of Justice for Parliamentary Affairs, Egypt, invited representatives of the different regional groups to continue consultations on possible themes for discussion in its next session and to submit proposals to the WIPO Secretariat by the end of February 2008.
 
The meeting was attended by representatives of member states, intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations. The presentations made during the meeting are available at: http://www.wipo.int/meetings/en/details.jsp?meeting_id=12802

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