[EUobserver] Google faces no EU-level fines if it ignores “right to be forgotten” verdict

Google won’t risk financial penalties from the EU’s top court if it chooses to ignore a recent “right to be forgotten” judgement. “The [European] Court of Justice has no power to fine a company in this context, competition law yes, but not here,” a contact at the Luxembourg-based legal arbiter told this website on Thursday (15 May). Fines would instead be handed out at member state level. […]

The case stems back to 2012 when Spanish citizen Mario Costeja Gonzalez filed a complaint against Google. Gonzalez demanded Google filter out his name from search queries linked to the repossession of his homes in a story first published in the Spanish newspaper La Vanguardia. The Court agreed with Gonzalez. The verdict has been both vilified and celebrated by pro-rights civil society groups. The London-based Index on Censorship says it will “open up the flood gates” with the BBC reporting the US internet giant has already received “right to be forgotten” requests from a pedophile and a British former politician seeking re-election. […]