Creation of a new category of a crime in the area of IP


Last 20th of September, the Spanish Council of Ministers has approved the draft law reform of the criminal code with a new crime definition in order to protect intellectual property.

The new crime punishes those who illegally facilitate access or location of copyrighted works on the Internet, without authorisation. Four conditions are required for the criminalization of the behavior.

1.      Knowledge or control by the natural or legal person of means that will facilitate copyrighted works access.

2.      Special maintenance and update of technical tools, providing organized and classified links lists.

3.      Data provided by third parties is not simply technical or automatic data processing.

4.      To intervene with the aim of obtaining direct or indirect economic benefits and damaging third parties.

In the first draft, a maximum penalty of 6 years was considered, but finally, during the parliamentary procedure it has been reduced to 4 years. The aforementioned shall not prejudice the enforcement of art. 271 (Spanish criminal code) regarding aggravated cases.

The executive explained that the main goal of this reform is to find a balance between copyright and new technologies and also that in no case this new category of crime will affect users, neutral searchers or P2P programs which allow content share.

Written by: Carolina Tapia




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