Case C-644/16, Synthon – resisting its impounded documents being inspected by a rival

How can you prove your case when the other party has in its possession the evidence you need? Perhaps you will need to instigate a search-and-seize raid on the other party? In this case, a Japanese pharmaceutical firm did just that. It organised Dutch court bailiffs to raid a Dutch firm suspected of making patent-infringing drugs. However, once the materials had been seized, the Japanese firm then asked the Dutch court for access to inspect them. This stumped the Dutch judges. What rules and standards should they apply to determine that request in light of the ‘evidence’ rule in Article 6 of the EU’s ‘enforcement’ Directive 2004/48? More

Case C-73/16, Puškár – privacy requires removal from a tax office blacklist

If personal information is given to the tax office, then when can it be processed for other purposes without that person’s consent? For example, is consent required when data is made available to other state bodies such as those concerned with combating financial fraud? More

Case C-322/15, Google Ireland and Italy – refusing to let the Italians look at their financial books

Italian law requires all Internet advertising companies to supply ‘economic system information’ to the Italian telecoms regulator, AGCOM. Data must be supplied in accordance with Italy’s accounting standards. Italian companies should therefore be able to comply. However, Google is seeking to annul this regulatory set up. It claims that it would be contrary to EU law’s ban on discrimination to extend the Italian rule to companies like Google Italy which is governed by its headquarters in Ireland. More

Case C-490/14, Verlag Esterbauer – a map is not a database

Is a map a database? The EU’s Database Directive 96/9/EC requires a database to be ‘a collection of independent works … or other materials …’. It is a phrase which has already been interpreted by the CJEU in its earlier ‘sporting fixtures’ case law but now it is not clear whether the CJEU’s reasoning also brings a map within the scope of EU database law. More

Case C-192/15, Rease – secretly spied on, medical data leaked, and left unprotected by the Dutch regulator

Can the Dutch Data Protection Agency exert any control over companies based in the UK and the USA which conduct covert surveillance on Dutch territory? And in the event of an individual’s data processing law rights under Dutch law being breached, what is to be done where the internal rules of the Dutch Data Protection Agency mean that the Agency will never ever act on a complaint coming from an individual? More