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03 August 2020

France: Lawyers from a Toulouse law firm and 50,000 petitioners want to stop 5G

Lawyers from a Toulouse law firm and 50,000 petitioners want to stop 5G

The deployment of the 5G network is creating controversy in France. The lawyers of the platform located in Toulouse MySmartCab have launched a petition and are preparing four class actions.
actu.fr, 3 August 2020 - translation

They address "those who want to oppose 5G without setting fire to antennas". After launching a class action against Linky, Christophe Léguevaques and Arnaud Durand of the Paris Bar are working from MySmartCab (platform for collective action), located in Toulouse.

(Photo:) The petition against 5G, which will lead to a class action lawsuit against 5G, has already been signed by more than 50,000 people. (©Illustration Adobe Stock)

The amicable solution ignored by the operators 

In order to file a class action lawsuit, MySmartCab's lawyers launched a petition in February 2020, "For the shutdown of 5G".

After having gathered 10,000 signatures, MySmartCab issued a formal notice to the 4 telephone operators in France to stop the deployment of 5G on April 23rd. Me Durand explains how they reacted:

"Three operators preferred not to answer us, Orange told us that they were not interested in a participatory procedure."

For those who are not specialists in law, a lawyer-assisted participatory procedure is an agreement by which the opposing parties, before going to court, undertake to work jointly and in good faith to resolve their dispute amicably.

"Since we did not have an answer for three operators, on July 23rd, bailiffs intervened at the head offices to order them to suspend their anticipated deployment of 5G. If in April we had 10,000 petitioners, there are now 50,000. In the absence of an amicable solution, four class actions will be prepared in September."

Health, Privacy, Freedom, Environment and Reality

To oppose 5G, after having been in contact with many petitioners, the lawyers of the Toulouse platform MySmartCab point out five problems linked to the deployment of 5G. Me Arnaud Durand details them:

Health: "the respect of the precautionary principle against waves classified as "possible carcinogens" (WHO), many studies show the dangers of 5G on the organism";

The right to privacy: "5G exacerbates the invasion of privacy allowed by digital technology because 5G must allow to connect a lot of objects online";

Freedom of choice: "the right to self-determination for everyone, because the French are faced with a technology that they have not chosen";

Respect for the environment: "5G is about energy sobriety and is causing an unprecedented waste";
The principle of reality: "to live in the real world and not an internet of things".

Combating 5G in the legal framework

As the Autorité de régulation des communications électroniques et des Postes (Anrep  (sic)**  ) launches the auction to allocate the useful frequencies for 5G between 20 and 30 September, and faced with the refusal of operators to negotiate, MySmartCab's lawyers intend to make use of the Law.

Of the 50,000 signatories to the petition, 2,000 people have already indicated that they want to file a class action suit. Four procedures are in preparation for the new school year, Me Durand specifies which ones:

An investigation procedure: "An action brought to obtain evidence on the facts underlying the deployment";
An administrative procedure: "An administrative appeal against provisions favorable to 5G";
Legal proceedings: "A legal action against the main operators marketing 5G";
An ECHR procedure: "Referral to the European Court of Human Rights against the deployment".

Me Arnaud Durand details his strategy:

"When you engage in a legal battle against such opponents, you have to be ready to attack them on all fronts, because they are used to the exercise."

An already "biased" fight?

If they are attacking 5G before its actual deployment on the territory, it is because the lawyers of MySmartCab assure that "no time should be wasted". And this for several reasons developed by Me Durand:

"If we plan to refer the case to the European Court of Human Rights, it is because several points already seem to us to be contentious. Anrep (sic), which is under the supervision of the government, must carry out a study on the health consequences of the waves emitted by 5G. This study is scheduled for 2021, while in September, the State is expected to charge operators more than 2 billion euros for the use of frequencies necessary for 5G. It is difficult to imagine that such a study will be independent." 

Mr Durand also questions the compatibility between 4G and 5G antennas:

"There are already 4G antennas, which operators describe as compatible with 5G. Is this not a hidden deployment in anticipation of 5G, and without having to wait for frequencies to be distributed?"

How to participate?

For all these reasons, MySmartCab's lawyers have decided to represent "the legalistic slingshot against 5G".

Those who are interested can find the petition on this site.

Those who would like to directly join the class action can go here. A membership fee of 28 € per year will be asked to be part of the group, and to lead the fight against 5G in court. After Linky's experience, Me Durand "expects to have convincing results on 5G".

Link to petition in French: https://5g.mysmartcab.fr/
More info on the class actions https://g5raisons.fr/

[Should read "ARCEP" ** independent French agency in charge of regulating telecommunications in France. It can be compared with the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) though regulation of the communications spectrum falls to ANFR. (Wikipedia]

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