djmutex writes "In an urgent ruling, the German Constitutional Court has temporarily blocked the Napster copyright violations class action of several American recording companies and artists against Bertelsmann. The court decided that the German court in Düsseldorf, which was, according to international conventions, required to serve the writ, may not do so until the Constitutional Court has checked that the suit does not violate Bertelsmann's rights granted by the German constitution. Since, according to those agreements, the service is a precondition for both the suit to proceed in the U.S. as well as the later acceptance of the U.S. ruling in Germany, the lawsuit is for now halted. It is unclear when the Constitutional Court will definitely decide, but it is not generally famed for its tempo on final rulings, and it also stated in the press release (in German) that constitutional rights could possibly be violated if "proceedings before state courts are obviously abused to discipline competitors through public media pressure and the risk of a conviction"." Reuters has a summary.
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