Tuesday, October 23, 2007

legal battle erupts among cell providers

A HIGH COURT judge of the Republic of Trinidad & Tobago has agreed to entertain further submissions from mobile telephone competitors, Digicel and Telecommunications Services of T&T (TSTT), before he rules on whether the Irish-owned company will be allowed wider access to TSTT’s database for evidence to substantiate its claims of call-blocking.

Justice Nolan Bereaux gave his decision yesterday, as he turned down an application by Digicel for a further order to be made to compel TSTT to disclose technical details of its network.

Digicel returned to court last week, complaining that TSTT failed to comply with the February 15, 2007, order which allowed Digicel’s engineers access to TSTT records, relating to alleged call-blocking, and ordered that this data be assessed by two agents

from the Telecommunications Authority (TATT) in the presence of TSTT and Digicel’s representatives.

TSTT has argued that the order was already complied with, and accused Digicel of trying to have the judge vary his original order.

Justice Bereaux agreed, but said he wanted to resolve the allegations of call-blocking, and ordered that further submissions be filed before he rules on December 12, on whether the data-collection exercise will be revisited.

Digicel has accused the local telecom services provider of blocking its customers’ calls to TSTT’s fixed-line and mobile networks, and was granted several injunctive reliefs in its lawsuit.

Alvin Fitzpatrick, SC, Terrence Bharrat and Andre Le Blanc appeared yesterday for Digicel, while Martin Daly, SC, Garvin Simmonette and Sashi Indarsingh represented TSTT.


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