Saturday, May 26, 2012

This Week in Luxembourg

This week’s Grand Chamber case is about “imperative grounds of public security” as a justification for kicking out a long term resident under art. 28(3) of the Free Movement Directive. Compared to AG Bot’s opinion, the Court’s opinion (Judge Cunha Rodrigues) leaves the Member States a lot more freedom to define the concept. The Grand Chamber does remind the Germans, though, that expulsion has to be based on concerns for the future. It is not a punishment for past offences. P.I. v. Oberbürgermeisterin der Stadt Remscheid Cf. European Law Blog

The appeal in Commission v. Verhuizingen Coppens looks like it is all sorts of fun. Not only did the original Commission decision (FR) involve a theory of a single continuous infringement of art. 81 EC based on three distinct agreements, two of which the applicant did not even know about, but on appeal the Court is asked to decide whether the General Court was right to annul the decision in its entirety, instead of partially. AG Kokott suggests overruling the General Court and annulling only partially, setting the fine at € 35.900 instead of € 104.000. So technically this is a win for the Commission…

In public tendering law, an Italian university hospital was granted a contract to examine the earthquake-proofness of various hospitals. Question: should this have been tendered competitively under Directive 2004/18? According to AG Trstenjak, it should have been, given taht the hospital was capable of acting as an economic operator in this instance. Azienda Sanitaria Locale di Lecce v. Ordine degli Ingegneri della Provincia di Lecce et al. (NL, DE, FR)

An Austrian court was confused by Pammer and Alpenhof about the meaning of art. 15(c) of Regulation 44/2001. However, AG Cruz Villalon had no difficulty concluding that that article applied to normal, non-distance consumer contracts as well. Mühlleitner v. Yusufi & Yusufi (NL, DE, FR) In other International Private Law news, AG Jääskinen has an opinion on the international taking of evidence in Lippens et al. v. Kortekaas et al., while AG Mengozzi applies Regulation 44/2001 to an (ex-)employee of a 3rd country embassy in Mahamdia v. Algeria

In a case concerning the Privileges and Immunities of the EU Institutions, AG Jääskinen concludes that Germany may extend certain social welfare benefits to employees of the ECB, unless the Conditions of employment of the staff of the European Central Bank already cover the benefit in question. Hessen v. Feyerbacher

In the General Court, the Commission lost two access to documents cases, both of them brought by (potential) litigants. Internationaler Hilfsfonds v. Commission and EnBW Energie Baden-Württemberg v. Commission

The General Court (Judge Prek) upheld the Commission’s art. 81 decision against Mastercard. Unusually, there was no fine, just a penalty payment in case of non-compliance.  Mastercard v. Commission

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