Apple has succeeded in blocking virtually anyone in Europe from selling Samsung’s Galaxy Tablet 10.1 (pictured). A court in Germany has issued an injunction against the sales, and a separate legal action is pending in the Netherlands for technical legal reasons.

Unlike several of Apple’s other lawsuits, which hinge on patents and hardware, at issue here are intellectual property rights related to the product’s design.

Apple is seeking a similar preliminary injunction in Australia, leading Samsung to indefinitely postpone the launch of the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in that country. Apple’s legal action against Samsung in the U.S., which also seeks an injunction, is set for a hearing on Oct. 13 in Northern California.

The injunction was effectively immediately in Germany, although differences in the laws of other European Union member countries mean additional steps may technically be required to make the ruling binding across all of them. An application for an E.U.-wide injunction can be made in any E.U. country, although the majority of these applications are made in Germany, according to intellectual property analyst Florian Mueller.

Samsung reacted forcefully. “We will take all necessary measures to ensure Samsung’s innovative mobile communications devices are available to customers in Europe and around the world,” the company said in a statement. It further asserted, “The request for injunction was filed with no notice to Samsung, and the order was issued without any hearing or presentation of evidence from Samsung.”

Mueller, who is blogging about the situation in detail, said that the German injunction process does not commonly involve the other party receiving notice or getting the opportunity to present a response.

Related Links:

Florian Mueller’s blog, Foss Patents –

Bloomberg –

The Telegraph (U.K.) –

Mueller shared Apple’s certificate of registration of the enforced intellectual property right at the heart of the litigation:

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