In Privacy First’s civil lawsuit against the Dutch Passport Act there was a curious development yesterday, 2 February 2011: the district court of The Hague declared both Privacy First and its 21 co-plaintiffs inadmissible. Apart from the incomprehensible legal arguments behind this, the most striking aspect is how short the court's judgement is. Privacy First cannot help thinking that the court wanted to be done with this case quickly.
The court motivates its judgement by declaring that Privacy First would not have an own interest in this case and that for the co-plaintiffs (citizens), the route to the administrative court would be all that remains. However, as a matter of fact, Privacy First as a relevant foundation has every interest in this case. What’s more, citizens are not in a position to (directly) object to the storage of fingerprints for their new passport or ID-card. Making such individual objections is only possible through time-consuming and cumbersome proceedings. Privacy First doesn’t tolerate citizens being sent 'from pillar to post' like this and is therefore considering taking further civil action. We will soon be reporting about this.
UPDATE 16 February 2011: Privacy First will appeal against the court's inadmissibility judgement in our Passport Trial.