Apple Attends Court With French Tax Activists Who Liken It To ‘Star Wars’ Empire

By Mikelle Leow, 13 Feb 2018

Composite image by DesignTAXI. Background images via Attac Franc

On Monday, Apple went to court with Parisian tax activist group Attac, requesting for the latter to be fully banned from carrying out more demonstrations in its French stores.

The Guardian reported that following the company’s filing, Attac—who claimed Apple participated in a “wide-scale tax evasion”—took things to galactic extremes, and cosplayed as ‘The Empire’ from Star Wars as its troops stormed to the front of the court.

Apple France accused Attac of “vandalizing shops and endangering the security of staff and customers,” and maintained that it has “a long tradition of supporting individuals and groups that peacefully express their opinions.” It also asked the court to fine the demonstrators €150,000 (US$185,000) and €3,000 (US$3,700) should they break the ban.

Attac rebutted the vandalism claims, insisting that it only visited Apple stores “in a festive and good-natured way.”

Retelling an incident, The Guardian wrote that 100 Attac volunteers had appeared at Apple’s Paris store at Place de l’Opera during the Christmas shopping period last year.

“Some danced the conga, others unfurled a huge banner saying ‘We’ll stop when Apple [pays]’ and some brandished huge cardboard checks in reference to the European commission ruling in August 2016 that the iPhone maker must reimburse the Irish state a record €13 billion (US$16 billion) to make up for what it considers to be unpaid taxes over a number of years.”

Attac’s lawyer described that Apple’s “demands are totally out of proportion to the principle of freedom of expression and freedom of expression and guaranteed by French law and the European convention on human rights.”

The French court will announce its decision on 23 February 2018.

[via MacRumors, images via Attac Franc]
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