An update on the AfriNIC situation

Tom Beecher beecher at
Mon Aug 30 13:15:05 UTC 2021

>  It sounds like
> the whole situation with the asset freeze could have been avoided had
> AfriNIC not engaged in contempt of court to start with; surely having
> more contempt of court is not the solution here, now is it?

I'm sorry, in what universe is discussing the situation on a mailing list
contempt of the Mauritian courts? Please.

Also, your facts are incorrect.
- CI filed for an injunction to prevent AFRINIC from reclaiming the IPs in
- AFRINIC was warned by the courts, but did comply with said injunction on
July 15th.

At that point, the dispute over AFRINIC's policy enforcement action can,
and should, have been handled in the courts. If this is as far as it went
until the matter was settled in court, I think most all would agree there's
not much of an issue/

But what happened next?

CI filed an AFFIDAVIT alleging monetary damage allowing them to garnish
AFRINIC's assets. An AFFIDAVIT. That's it. It begs an interesting question;
how was CI harmed to the tune of $50M USD when , at that point:
- AFRINIC was enjoined from terminating CI's membership
- AFRINIC was enjoined from reclaiming the IP resources assigned to CI

It likely goes to the heart of what we SHOULD care about; CI most likely
claimed that the IP blocks were their 'property' and worth $50M, even
though the matter of 'is an IP allocation property' is not settled law. We
all know that the courts are often far behind technology, so this isn't

By taking this action, CI is clearly trying to kneecap AFRINIC from being
able to properly defend itself in court. Again, we should all care about
this, because if it becomes legal precedent that 'IP allocations are
property of the assignee' , an RIR attempt to reclaim them becomes a much
more complex issue that could have wide ranging impact to the system at

On Sun, Aug 29, 2021 at 11:51 PM Constantine A. Murenin <mureninc at>

> On 29/08/2021, Jay Hennigan <jay at> wrote:
> > On 8/29/21 11:42, Constantine A. Murenin wrote:
> >
> >> It would seem reasonable to leave the whole issue up to the courts,
> >> instead of engaging in contempt of foreign courts, and to stop the
> >> vigilante justice against any of the parties, especially the end users
> >> who are not even a party to this whole dispute.
> >
> > The end users are an indirect party.
> >
> > Assume someone were in the business of stealing cars, forging their
> > titles, and selling them to innocent third parties. A police officer
> > pulling someone over for speeding might compare the VIN on the title to
> > that on the car and discover that it was stolen. The stolen property
> > would be returned to its owner and the end user purchaser would be out
> > of luck other than having recourse against the thief.
> >
> > The same principle applies to someone who innocently accepts counterfeit
> > money.
> >
> > If the Internet community as a whole or significant players therein were
> > to treat these number resources as stolen property fraudulently obtained
> > under false pretenses and stop routing those netblocks, the end users
> > would indeed suffer just like the person who unwittingly bought a stolen
> > car or accepted a counterfeit bill. The end user would pursue recourse
> > against the party who rented or sold the fraudulently obtained netblocks
> > and the business model of obtaining number resources under false
> > pretenses solely to rent or resell at a profit would collapse.
> But it is up to the courts to decide whether or not the property was
> obtained under false pretences.
> The situation is more akin to buying a car from an authorised dealer,
> and then the dealer having a dispute with the manufacturer, or the
> manufacturer having a dispute with a supplier.  A business dispute
> doesn't suddenly make the item you have the title for to be stolen
> property, now does it?
> What you're advocating for is hiring a hitman to take care of the
> problem outside of the justice system, to take things by force which
> are not yours for the taking, just because you don't like the business
> authorised dealers are in.  Please don't; the courts are already
> looking into the business dispute.  Plus, you keep ignoring the fact
> that everyone else is already reselling IP address space from other
> RIRs, why is Cloud Innovation Ltd and AfriNIC space resale suddenly
> treated differently here?  Please have some respect for the Mauritian
> court that's already handling this business dispute.  It sounds like
> the whole situation with the asset freeze could have been avoided had
> AfriNIC not engaged in contempt of court to start with; surely having
> more contempt of court is not the solution here, now is it?
> C.
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