Jesus Sainz, a former employee of deCODE genetics in Iceland, was found guilty in court yesterday for breaching copyright. He was given a two-month suspendable sentence. The ruling has been appealed to the Supreme Court.*
Sainz was charged with copying 29 documents at deCODE without permission over a two-week period last June, which allegedly contained information about deCODE’s investments. Sainz was found guilty based on the 50th article on copyright law. Fréttabladid reports.
“The ruling confirms that information is protected by law in Iceland. This is the first occasion in Icelandic judicial history when breaching copyright law and copying documents has been punished,” said Thórir Haraldsson, deCODE’s attorney.
Erla Svanhvít Árnadóttir, Sainz’s attorney, said the ruling is based on a misunderstanding of the 50th article on copyright law and on the testimony of only one employee of deCODE. She said the ruling has been appealed.
The 50th article on copyright law in Iceland states: “Those who produce registries, tables, forms, databases and similar, which contain data and information about extensive investments, have the exclusive right to publish the documents as a whole or their main content.”
The law further states: “Repeated and systematic usage of extracts from a database is illegal if it contradicts with its regular usage or the interest of those who established the database.”
Click here to read more about the case.
*Earlier today icelandreview.com reported that Jesus Sainz had been sentenced to two years in prison. That was not correct. Sainz was given a two-month suspended sentence. This error has now been corrected. Icelandreview.com sincerly apologizes for any inconvenience caused.