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Privacy International et al. vs. Trovicor

Case overview

Date filed 1 February 2013
Current status Concluded
Issue Gamma & Trovicor export surveillance technology to Bahrain
Summary of the case The complaint alleges that Gamma and Trovicor are selling intrusive surveillance technology and training to the Bahraini government where this technology is allegedly used to target human rights activists.
By doing so, and by continuing to maintain the technologies, Gamma and Trovicor are alleged to be aiding and abetting the Bahraini government in its perpetration of human rights abuses, including violations of the right to privacy, freedom of expression and freedom of association, as well as arbitrary arrest and torture.
Developments/Outcome In November 2013, the German NCP offered to mediate a discussion about Trovicors management system, but it would not consider the companys role in human rights abuses in Bahrain. The NCP argued that the allegations were not substantiated.

The complainants disputed the NCPs decision and argued that they had provided sufficient evidence about Trovicors business relationship with the Bahraini government.

After the NCP refused to change its stance, the complainants refused mediation on 30 January 2014. The NCP issued its final statement “terminating” the case on 21 May 2014.

The Gamma case was accepted by the UK NCP on 24 June 2013 even though the NCP found that direct evidence about the companys supply of surveillance technology and training had not been provided by the complainants.

While the UK NCP appointed an external mediator, the process had several flaws. The parties did not have an agreed agenda before they met, and information about who would represent the company was not provided.

Gamma was represented by an external lawyer who was not authorised to take decisions and did not have knowledge of the relevant technical issues. The complainants were prepared to discuss the substance of their complaint while the Gamma representative only wanted to agree to additional dates for mediation.

After one meeting, the process entailed written statements by the parties to come to an agreement.

Given the costs involved for complainants to attend mediation, the parties note that the NCP should ensure mediation is conducted effectively.

The NCP is preparing the final statement.
Relevant OECD Guidelines
Case keywords Les droits de l'homme, Collaboration des PCN

NCP Information

NCP name National Contact Point Germany
NCP address Scharnhorststrasse 34-37 10115 Berlin, Germany
NCP website
Other NCPs involved



Company Information

Company responsible Trovicor GmbH
Company address
Company website
Company in violation Trovicor GmbH
Country of operations Bahrain
Other companies involved

Timeline of developments

Date Actor Action Description Document
21 May 2014 National Contact Point Germany letter Final Statement Trovicor case by the German NCP. download pdf (6Kb)  
1 November 2013 National Contact Point Germany accept German NCP accepts complaint  
7 February 2013 Privacy International report Background documentation for the OECD complaint.  
1 February 2013 Privacy International file download pdf (69Kb)  

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