Azərbaycan Respublikası	Müəllif Hüquqları Agentliyi

Defense of violated rights

Defense of violated rights


In accordance with world practice, copyright and related rights are enforced in Azerbaijan by the courts. The regulations on protection of rights embodied in Section V of the Copyright Act are reflected in the new Civil Code, Code of Civil Procedure and Criminal Code, which came into force on 1 September 2000, and also in the Code of Administrative Offences. It should be noted that that violation of intellectual property rights exposes the offender to civil, criminal and administrative sanctions.
The courts and the police have assumed responsibility for enforcement of the Act.
The State Copyright Agency has devised a complex anti-piracy programmer, covering measures to protect works and improve co-operation between the copyright service and the police, as well as judicial defense procedures and customs arrangements. As part of this programmer, the Agency is introducing ways of identifying lawfully produced phonograms and videos, and keeps a regular check on the market. Offences have been codified and entered on a data-base, with the information going to the relevant authorities.
All recent prosecutions for infringement of copyright and related rights have been initiated by the Agency.
In 2001, the claims of several dozen rights-holders, who had chosen to defend their rights through the administrative channels, were settled at the Agency by agreement between the parties.
Prosecutions brought by the Agency for violations of these rights also have an important deterrent effect. In 2001, its representatives were involved, either as prosecuting parties or as experts, in three cases in the courts of first instance, three in the Economic Court and one in the Court of Appeal.
Regular supervision of the market extended to over 3,500 audio cassettes, over 1,200 video cassettes, some 650 CDs, over 200 broadcasts and approximately 150 printed works. Five types of violation were identified:


  • large-scale pirating of imported works (involving violation of the reproduction, import and distribution rights of mainly foreign rights-holders);
  • pirating of the works of national authors and performers, normally involving the unauthorized recording of concerts, radio and TV programmers, films, etc.;
  • use of pirated items in combination with lawfully used works;
  • use which respects the rights of phonogram producers and performers, but violates those of authors;
  • unauthorized “collections” or “compilations”, produced in small quantities on amateur equipment.

In 2001, on the basis of complaints lodged by rights-holders and their associations, Agency experts took part in six police raids and examined 271 confiscated video cassettes, 48 DVDs, 90 CDs and 166 books and magazines.
At the request of the police, the Agency submitted 4 expert reports to the Ministry of Internal Affairs, 1 to the Public Prosecutor’s Department, and 1 to the State Committee on Admission of Students. 
Tables showing the involvement of the civil, criminal and administrative courts in enforcement, and giving a breakdown of the anti-piracy programmer, are enclosed.

K.Imanov, 2005

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