Comments made by lawyer Azamat Khagov to an article titled “Polygraph machine versus Facebook”Telecom blog

23 June 2011

Paul Ceglia, a New York businessman, which is in litigation with Facebook and lays claim to the lion's share of its ownership, has cleared a polygraph examination. Facebook lawyers encourage the public to make no tale of it.

Ceglia wants to win 84% ownership of Facebook by court action. He filed the lawsuit against company’s founder Mark Zuckerberg about a year ago. The businessman argues that in 2003 he invested into the website, and that he and Zuckerberg signed a contract which entitled him to 50 % of the project revenue. He also was entitled to an additional 1 percent interest in the business per day after the agreed upon launch date until website completion, that’s why he claims an amount equal to 84% ownership of the company.

Paul Ceglia is a bit of a lad

Ceglia did not produce in court the original contract and e-mails he exchanged with Zuckerberg. Facebook lawyers regard copies enclosed to the claim as a fraud. A polygraph examination was conducted to determine the veracity of the alleged contract made between Zuckerberg and Ceglia. According to statements of Ceglia’s lawyers submitted to federal court, the claimant has cleared an examination.

Facebook lawyers still maintain that e-mails and the contract are a fraud. “This latest court filing confirms that the bogus emails are, literally, a cut-and-paste job, just like the so-called contract is a fraud,” said one of Facebook lawyers. “And the fact that this plaintiff now has to rely on a polygraph test says it all. Everyone knows polygraph tests are easily manipulated, which is why courts routinely disregard them.”

Experts explain that this is not exactly the case. “Can one deceive a cardiograph? Or a phonendoscope? One cannot deceive a polygraph machine. Instead, one can fool a polygraph operator. Operator’s failure to comply with methodological guidelines of polygraph test is the main prerequisite for successful cheating,” commented Sergey Popovichev, Cand. Sc. {Psychology}, an expert at the EPOS company, the manufacturer of polygraph machines used by personnel of Russian law-enforcement structures and federal offices.

“So far in Russia the use of polygraph tests is not enshrined in law,” told Azamat Hagov of the Saint-Petersburg Bar Association, consultation office of “Vertikal” company. “Nevertheless, one cannot maintain that polygraph test results are not used in courts, more specifically, in criminal proceedings. A wide experience of application of polygraph is gathered within the limits of psychologic and physiologic expert examination.

However, the courts do not render decisions based only on such expert examination, since they should be compared with the other evidence available in a given case.

Polygraph test results are more widely applied in the USA, Canada, Israel, India, Hungary and other countries, where such conceptually new information collecting medium is introduced into practice by legislative bodies.

In particular, in 1990 the United States Congress authorized more wide application of polygraph by law enforcement bodies, and over the last seven years the United States Congress adopted several laws to make the use of polygraph tests more orderly. US courts also conditionally uses polygraph test results as evidence.”

Mark Zuckerberg does not deny that he maintained a business relationship with Ceglia in 2003, and was hired by him to write software codes for StreetFax project, however, he denies that he made an agreement concerning Facebook.

Aleksey Tsoy  

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