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U.S. District Court Judge Lourdes Baird visits Uruguay to participate in IPR seminar

September 3, 2004

U.S. District Court Judge Lourdes Baird with Principal Prosecutor Dr. Marcelo Brovia, Minister of Education and Culture Dr. Leonardo Guzman, and Mr. James Perez, Chief of Economic and Commercial Section of the U.S. Embassy Montevideo. [U.S. Embassy photo by Vince Alongi]

Judge Baird with Principal Prosecutor Dr. Marcelo Brovia,
Minister of Education and Culture Dr. Leonardo Guzman, and Mr. James Perez, Chief of Economic and Commercial Section of the U.S. Embassy Montevideo.

During a visit sponsored by the United States Embassy, U.S. District Court Judge Lourdes Baird was invited to participate in the “Jornadas de Derecho de Autor”, a seminar organized by the Uruguayan Chamber of Intellectual Property (CUPI). It was held at the AGADU conference room last Wednesday and Thursday. Judge Baird´s presentation focused on her legal experiences in matters of protection of royalties in the United States. She shared some of her most important landmark legal decisions on the subject, including an injunction in 2002 against the largest adult entertainment network on the Internet, which substantially reduced the number of pornographic and other adult entertainment sites, along with the theft of celebrity images and movie clips.

The audience included members of several local associations concerned about the proliferation copyright violations that are seriously affecting the music and software industries, as well as the sale of printed media. Judge Baird shared the panel with Judge Dra. Nilsa Salvo, District Attorney Dr. Enrique Moller and Police Inspector Ernesto Carreras Peña.

Judge Baird explained the evolution and current state of protection of royalties legislation in the U.S., and made a comparative analysis of the legislation dealing with this matter in both countries. She pointed out as well the various challenges that arise from new technologies affecting the rights of intellectual property and. Earlier in the morning the Prosecretario of the Republic, Dr. Leonardo Costa, along with Diputados Dr. Nahum Bergstein and Dr. Pablo Mieres explained the process and characteristics of a law approved last year in Uruguayan Parliament dealing with royalties and intellectual property.

After the seminar, Judge Baird met with the Minister of Education and Culture Dr. Leonardo Guzmán, Principal Prosecutor Dr. Marcelo Brovia, and Director of Justice Dr. Carlos Teysera to discuss the impact of copyright violations in the education system affecting students and teachers as well as writers, authors and publishing companies.

Judge Baird is a native of Quito, Ecuador. She was U.S. attorney for the Central District of California when then-President George Bush nominated her to the federal bench in March 1992. She was confirmed by the Senate later that year and became the first Hispanic woman to serve as a judge in the district.

In 1999 she presided over a highly publicized trademark infringement suit against Pfizer Inc where the 7-panel jury awarded $143 million to Trovan Ltd making it the largest judgment of its kind awarded in the United States.

 

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