Freedom of press and expression: The blocking of access to users Italians adopted through the seizure of the the Italian providers’s IP and DNS, in case of alleged defamation is illegal, an Italian Court said.

The blocking of access to users Italians adopted through the seizure of the the Italian providers’s  IP and DNS, in case of alleged defamation, must be considered excessive in relation to the legal right to be protected.

The seizure of a website should be  solely on one or more offensive phrases and only if the sentences haven’t  been deleted in the meantime (which in the case had already been made by the owner of the site, as certified by fax sent to the provider by the police post on March 9 the same note).

This was decided by the Court of the Freedom of Belluno, Italy, chaired by the President of the Court Sergio Trentanovi (Judge Antonella Coniglio and Elizabeth Scolozzi) ,  on March 9.

The site, except one  ironic phrase against an Italian Silvio Berlusconi Party Mps, On. Maurizio Paniz, must then return in its entirety on the web.

The Court therefore accepts the claim of the 200 Internet Service  Provider of  Confcommercio,  belonging to the Association “Assoprovider”, proposed by the lawyer Fulvio Sarzana di S.Ippolito, who, immediately protested to the amplitude of the measure imposed by the judge for preliminary investigations of Belluno Sergio Giancotti.
The provider had complained about the serious risks to the constitutional rights of free expression and the right to information related to execution of the measure.
The lawyer had argued the measure in front of  the Board chaired by the President of the Court on March 9.
The Court established two principles:
1) The Judge of preliminary investigations  would only order the seizure of the alleged defamatory words and not the entire site, arguing that otherwise would place serious  risks  to the protection of freedom of thought, freedom of speech and press as protected by Article 21 of the italian Constitution.
2) The measure of inhibition to the Italian surfers through the ISP’s DNS and IP covered by the order of execution signed by the prosecutor are too high in order to the good to  be protected, in this case the reputation of  Hon Maurizio Paniz.

Fulvio Sarzana
Studio Legale Roma Sarzana & Associati
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