Copyright bully ACS:Law falls at first hurdle

The law firm that attempts to make a living by firing of threatening letters to folk who may or may not have downloaded copyrighted songs through file-sharing services has left court with a bloody nose.

ACS:Law was seeking default judgments against eight individuals few of whom were offering any sort of defence yet failed in every instance. It was the firm's first attempt to secure judgments against people whom it accused of trading in copyrighted material

Judge Birss QC of the Patents County Court said he was "not sorry" to have declined ACS:Law's attempts. Although he he was too polite to say ACS:law, which is run by one by now infamous Andrew Crossley, barely knows its arse from its legal elbow, an observer might.

A Default Judgement is "a binding judgment in favour of either party based on some failure to take action by the other party. Most often, it is a judgment in favour of a plaintiff when the defendant has not responded to a summons or has failed to appear before a court of law."

ACS:Law said it was operating on behalf of an outfit Media C.A.T Limited And claimed that all the defendant had download films "of a pornographic nature".

Three of the accused filed some form of defence, allowing the judge to dismiss the applications in the blink of an eye.

In three other cases, no record that a claim form had been served was presented so they were thrown out too.

In the final two cases Judge said ACS:Law had not appeared to make the formal application he felt was necessary. They were thrown out too.

"I should end by recording that I am not sorry to have reached the conclusion I have in refusing all the requests for default judgment," said Judge Birss.