Mr. Michel Platini
Union of European Football Associations
Dear Mr. Platini,
The image of UEFA and the European Football Championship which is to be held in Ukraine and Poland in 2012 may suffer irreparable blow due to the scandal developing around ProstoPrint, a popular Ukrainian printing company which applies images on souvenir products and clothes from the clients’ layout originals.
On September 6, 2011, as a result of militia raid against the office of ProstoPrint, the company’s activity was paralyzed, the equipment was seized and criminal proceedings were taken against the employees. They are accused of illegal application of Euro 2012 logo on the clothing. It was revealed at once that the militiamen themselves had ordered application of such logo on 50 T-shirts so as to obtain the grounds for suspension of the company’s activity.
When the militia arranged such provocation, they committed a number of gross outrages: search without an order, seizure of property without an order, interrogation of the suspects and examination of the witnesses with the use of physical and psychological pressure (threats of violence).
The militiamen did not have any grounds for such measures against ProstoPrint because it is a customer, the owner of the product, who is liable for observance of incorporeal rights, but not the company which provides printing services. This is governed both by the Ukrainian laws and by the relevant EU directives. The employees of ProstoPrint were not even obliged to verify the customer’s right to use the logo of Euro 2012.
The real reason of the “assault” against the company with all this iniquity was not the T-shirts produced through the militia’s provocation but quite another product, very popular T-shirts among Ukrainians with inscriptions including keen criticism at President Yanukovych.
Under the pretext of UEFA’s incorporeal right protection, the nondemocratic Ukrainian powers have unleashed the campaign of illegal persecution of its citizens for political beliefs. In order to defend our rights and freedoms set forth in the Constitution, we will do our best to draw a wide international response to this scandal.
It is especially outrageous that UEFA patent agents in Ukraine are directly involved in the crime against ProstoPrint as they have already written an application to prosecute the employees of the company criminally on the ground of the gross provocation committed by the militia.
We kindly request you to interfere with this situation personally and to withdraw the application of UEFA patent agents against ProstoPrint due to absence of the formal components of a crime in the company’s actions and in that way to prevent from using UEFA as a tool for political repressions.
Coordinator-General of Civil movement "Spilna Sprava"