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ECONOMIC CRIME WING (ECW)

The Anti-Corruption and Economic Crime Wing of FIA transferred to National Accountability Bureau (NAB) on 16.08.2004 have been restored vide notification dated 24.10.2008.

The Anti-Corruption and Economic Crime Wing of FIA transferred to National Accountability Bureau (NAB) on 16.08.2004 have been restored vide notification dated 24.10.2008.

Intellectual Property Rights Enforcement

  1. The Federal Investigation Agency has constituted an Advisory Committee on IPR Enforcement comprising of Ms. Ameena Saiyid, Managing Director, Oxford University Press, Mr. Kamal Ahmed, Country Manager, Microsoft Corporation Pakistan, Mr. Hasan Irfan Khan, Advocate, M/s Irfan & Irfan, Mr. Q. M. Shahed of Pakistan Tobacco Company, Mr. Ikram ul Majeed Sehgal, Security & Management Services, Mr. Muhammad Siddique, Collector Customs (Legal), as honorary members.
  2. On the invitation of Director General FIA, an inaugural meeting of the Advisory Committee was held on 2nd July 2009. It was Chaired by Mr. Irfan Nadeem, Addtional Director General FIA / Economic Crime Branch, at FIA HQ, Islamabad. Besides, the above members and FIA officers, Syed Khalid Mehmood Bokhari, Director General IPO-Pakistan, also attended the meeting.
  3. At the outset, the Addl. Director General ECW warmly welcomed all the participants, followed by presentation by Mr. Shahid Nadeem Baloch, Director IPR on the performance of FIA and its future plans, which was highly appreciated. The participants discussed current issues relating to the IPR Laws, Enforcement Actions, Challenges being confronted with and the mechanism to be adopted for effective enforcement of IPR Laws in Pakistan. The participants agreed on sharing of database, capacity building of Investigators, Prosecutors, initiating a proposal for establishing Special Tribunals for speedy trial of IPR cases and mutual cooperation in crime fighting, in coordination with IPO-Pakistan. While FIA’s initiative of organizing a high level forum of IPR was appreciated, it was also decided to continue such meetings followed by Seminars/Conferences as a part of awareness campaign.
  4. Four working groups for the Policy Formulation, Awareness Campaign, Sharing of Database and identifying “Big Fish” involved in large scale IPR violations have been formed for submitting their reports in the next meeting.

Minutes of inaugural meeting of FIA’s advisory committee on IPR enforcement, held on 2nd July 2009 at FIA HQ, Islamabad

The inaugural session of FIA’s Advisory Committee on IPR Enforcement was held on 2nd July 2009 at 11 a.m. at FIA HQ, Islamabad. It was Chaired by Mr. Irfan Nadeem, Addl. Director General FIA / Economic Crime Branch, FIA HQ Islamabad. List of the participants and Agenda of meeting are annexed.

At the outset the Addl. Director General FIA conveyed a message of welcome of Director General FIA Mr. Tariq Khosa, who could not make it to the meeting due to another official commitment. He then warmly welcomed all the participants, especially the honorary members of Advisory Committee and apprised them about the global importance of Intellectual Property Right in general and the challenges on the subject being confronted with, in Pakistan, in particular. Federal Investigation Agency genuinely needs the valuable guidance / assistance of the Advisory committee in our commitments to combat the menace of IPR violations, keeping in view the basic core values, he added.

Presentation by Director FIA /IPR

A presentation was made by Mr. Shahid Nadeem Baloch, Director IPR regarding the performance of FIA on the enforcement of IPR Laws, since FIA was mandated in 2005.

S.NOElaboration by DirectorObservations of the Participants
1 Introduction Background and the importance of IPR very well defined.
2 Government’s Resolve Creation of IPO-Pakistan and empowerment of FIA with the inclusion of Copyright Ordinance on the schedule of FIA is a first step. Trade Mark Act and other IPR Laws need review and enforced.
3 Scenario in Pakistan Situation encouraging, yet a lot to be done.
4 IPR Laws in Pakistan Trade Mark Act and other IPR Laws need review and enforcement.
5 Achievements FIA’s performance in curbing the menace of IPR violations encouraging.
6 Important Cases Contribution of FIA with huge seizure of pirated products and counterfeit optical discs / software remarkable
7 Progress of Cases Capacity building of Investigators / Prosecutors needs to be improved for better convictions.
8 Activation of IPR Field Units IPR Field Units to be activated / equipped with adequate strength / logistics.
9 Way Forward Strengthening of IPR Enforcement in areas of Book / Software / Films & Music Piracy and Copyright violations of Pharmaceutical products – agreed.
10 Recommendations Recommendations regarding empowerment of FIA to enforce Trademark Laws along with Copyright Laws, establishing Special Tribunals for speedy trials and capacity building of Investigators / Prosecutors and Judges – endorsed.

The presentation was appreciated by the participants. The Addl. Director General than opened the floor for discussion and invited the views / suggestions of the Advisory Committee on the issue of IPR enforcement. The suggestions / discussions of the members are reproduced hereunde

S.noNameViews of the Hon. Members
1 Mr. Hasan Irfan Khan, Advocate Supreme Court assisted by  Mr. Mueen Qamar, Advocate As a first step, educating people on software issues and effective action to eradicate and cut the origin of IPR violations carries paramount importance. The issues of requirement of complainant, pirated/copied books sale in schools, enforcement of trademark ordinance and role of judiciary may be taken up. Counterfeit medicines affect the quality of health and our livelihood. Creation of Courts and Tribunals is a sensitive issue and for getting positive results, judiciary is to be taken in confidence.
2 Ms. Ameena Saiyid OBE She apprised the participants that to change people’s thinking and their priority regarding IPR violations, lot of efforts needed to convince people that piracy is a very important issue and that they share the responsibility to eliminate it. Enforcement to be extended to the extent of pirated labels on medicines / food items. Pakistan is being used as a transit base for Iranian pirated books which are being smuggled and sold in large scale in Pakistan, Afghanistan and India, since Iran is not signatory to relevant world conventions. She emphasized the need of nabbing the whole-sellers of pirated products and promised that she would provide list of such big groups involved in the large scale trading. Packaging area to be focused as it covers Copyright violations coming in the purview of FIA, she added. There is no provision of minimum punishment in IPR Laws which is a barrier in creating deterrence. She assured of her support in organizing awareness campaign.
3 Mr. Kamal Ahmed,assisted by Mr. Salman Siddiqui. Ground realities to be realized and enforcement should not be limited to the books / money. Piracy / Counterfeiting of Software, Food Items, Pharmaceutical products also be given same importance. Scores of IPR violation cases intercepted by FIA would justify establishment of Special Tribunals. Identification of counterfeit areas requires a joint and well organized campaign. IPR violation within Pakistan is a matter of great concern as one CD comes in, then pirated on large scale and launched for sale. Due importance is to be given to the tactical side and the requirement of the complainant may be waived off, since the copyright violation is cognizable offence. Big Fish on demand side also to be sorted out. Microsoft would extend all possible cooperation / assistance.
4 Mr. Q. M. Shahed, Pakistan Tobacco Company. Public awareness on IPR may be organized through media and all Ministries to share this responsibility. Especially Ministry of Education may be moved for adding one page in a book for awareness on IPR at School / College level. Offences of printing and labels are co-related. IPR violations are given very low priority from crime point of view.
5 Mr. Ikram ul Majeed Sehgal, Security & Management Services Coordinated efforts could be done with the help of all stakeholders. The concerned companies can design effective automated and actionable initiatives. Software persons can create National Database. Raids conducted should be well publicized in print and electronic media. Awareness campaign be launched involving print / electronic media including Talk Shows on TV channels.
6 Mr. Muhammad Siddique, Collector (Legal) Emphasized on the need of capacity building of Investigators / Prosecutors in coordination with IPO-Pakistan as World Intellectual Property Organizations (WIPO) has international obligation for the developing country members. IPO-Pakistan to share the responsibility by contributing its effective support to Enforcement Agencies in financing training / enforcement requirements as also in organizing awareness campaign. He also made a brief presentation on the role of customs concerning IPR Enforcement.
7 Syed Khalid Mehmood Bokhari, DG IPO-Pakistan Expressed his sincere thanks on organizing such a graceful high level forum on IPR enforcement. IPO should have done it much earlier, he added. Awareness is not a particular issue alone. A joint effort of all stakeholders could move the government for according due priority to IPR enforcement in Pakistan. Media channels should bring at least one talk show every month on IPR subject. FIA to keep continued with good performance and such conferences with concrete ideas, for sharing progress and follow up. We can organize lectures and debates in Educational Institutions. He assured of outright support of IPO in managing the required awareness campaign and other related issues.

Mr. Shahid Nadeem Baloch, Director FIA / IPR advanced the idea of organizing and celebrating IPR Week as a big event in October/November 2009 through the courtesy of IPO-Pakistan, as a part of effective awareness campaign. During the week, Print / Electronic Media can contribute through Articles, Features and TV Talk Shows. While all participants warmly welcomed the idea, DG IPO-Pakistan promised to extend all possible support to make it a success. Director IPR further apprised the participants that knowledge of the source and route of pirated products plays a pivotal role in intercepting and prosecuting the violators. FIA is on its way to establish IPR Intelligence Units in each zone. Nevertheless pirated products manufacturers / sellers can be identified in collaboration with all stakeholders, as they share equal responsibility

Mr. Muhamamd Azam Khan, Director Law apprised the participants about the current challenges being faced by FIA Investigators / Prosecutors at trial stages of IPR cases. The accused parties engage highly paid high profile lawyers to defend while the services of FIA’s Prosecutors are confined to limited courts. In most of the cases higher courts have stayed the investigation / prosecution proceedings and the problem could not be resolved for want of Special Prosecutors demanding very high fee. We need identified skilled lawyers to appear in courts for the assistance of I.O.s / Prosecutors, he added. He also pointed out that piracy of printing and labels are the violation of Copyright Ordinance and Trademark Ordinance respectively and both laws are co-related. However, FIA can take cognizance only to the violation falling under its purview. For making IPR Laws Enforcement more effective and deterrent punishment proposal may be initiated mainly by the parties being affected. Examination of relevant laws and advocacy of punishment is to be made by stakeholders with a view to extending active support to FIA in its commitment of fighting crime. He further disclosed that issue of necessity of complainant in IPR cases is pending decision in High Court, Karachi.

Mr. Hasan Irfan Khan requested the Director Law for providing details of such cases and assured of providing all possible assistance to FIA in overcoming the problem of complainant requirement.

Director IPR proposed for making one comprehensive IPR Law with minimum punishment expressly provided. He further proposed formation of working groups on relevant subjects for presenting their suggestions / reports in the next meeting of the Advisory Committee.

Director Crime FIA HQ proposed exploring short term as well as long term areas of enforcement measures. COS to DG FIA endorsed the idea of well planned awareness campaign. ADG Immigration shared his views regarding importance of capacity building of the Investigators / Prosecutors for having better skill of quality investigation/prosecution, as also knowledge about the market, violators and aggrieved parties.

The outcome of the meeting on 07 points agenda, after extensive discussion is enumerated as under

S.noAgendaDecision
1 Policy and approach to tackle IPR crimes. May be given high priority from crime point of view. Coordinated efforts needed.
2 Training / capacity building of FIA Investigators in IPR crime All stakeholder to contribute and the IPO-Pakistan provide all possible assistance of the highest standards to FIA
3 Identification of areas and assigning priority to IPRviolations. Agreed for sharing database and best practices
4 Creation of IPR database having useful information about piracy in different fields, person involved in the business and case/ enquiries. All stakeholder to share the responsibility and work jointly for the creation of national database
5 Identification of Big Fish involved in large scale piracy/production. Agreed to move faster in this direction. Ms.Ameena Saiyid offered to provide list of whole-sellers of pirated books / products.
6 Awareness Campaign Agreed. Utmost importance to be given and coordinated efforts shall be made by all concerned.
7 Formation of Working Group to develop IPR Manual / Procedural Rules. Agreed.

In summing up, the committee unanimously decided the formation of following 04 working groups, to submit their suggestions / reports on their respective subjects in the next meeting;

S.noSubject Working Group
1 Policy formulation / revision of IPR Laws for amendments Mr. Hassan Irfan Khan Assisted by DG IPO Pakistan & Director Law, FIA HQ.
2 Awareness campaign Ms.Ameena Saiyid in coordination with DG IPO & Director IPR FIA HQ.
3 Sharing of Database and Identifying Big Fish Mr. Kamal Ahmed & Mr.Ikram ul Majeed Sehgal
4 Drafting of IPR Procedural Rules / Manual for FIA’s Enforcement. Mr.Muhammad Siddique in coordination with Director Law, FIA HQ

Mr. Irfan Nadeem, Addl. Director General FIA lauded the participants for their time and very informative session of discussions, giving new dimensions. Government needs to be given an in depth briefing on IPR Enforcement for assigning due priority to this important issue on the basis of long / short term measures, with a view to building our national image and improving international ranking, he added.

The meeting ended at 2:45 p.m. with a vote of thanks to the Chair.

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