Friday, 21 September 2012

Papanicolaou and the so-called "Ecumenical Order" lose in the Court of Appeals

The self-styled "Priory of Florida of the Knights Hospitallers of the Sovereign Order of St John of Jerusalem, Knights of Malta, The Ecumenical Order" run by Mr Nicholas Papanicolaou (who in the late 1990s purchased the Scottish feudal barony of Finlaystone Maxwell and incorrectly styles himself "Baron Nicholas Papanicolaou") was sued in the Florida Federal Disrict Court over the misuse of the registered marks of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta, in a case brought by the SMOM. The Order of Malta challenged Papanicolaou on the grounds that his organisation's name mimicked that of the SMOM, causing confusion, and that the Arms and Cross he used infringed the registered marks of the SMOM.

The initial judgement, which dismissed the SMOM suit and accepted Papanicolaou's version of history - although he is not an historian and was contradicted by an expert historical witness who gave evidence to the court - has now been reversed and the judge criticised, by the Federal Appeal Court. Although this judgement was published on September 11, 2012, as of today Mr Papanicolaou makes no reference to it on his web site, but continues to include only the original judgement. But then Papanicolaou also ignores the letter from HM King Michael of Romania to the Prince Grand Master of the genuine Order of Malta, affirming that he only recognises the latter as a genuine Order of Malta, and instead reproduces a letter from the King which HM sent having believed at the time he was dealing with the genuine Order. Papanicolaou knows full well that the King wants nothing to do with his organisation.

Equally outrageous is his use of a "Papal Blessing" - a document which anyone can obtain from vendors around the Basilica of St Peter's and use whatever name they please - as supposed evidence of Papal support for his "Order". Since Papanicolaou is outspokenly hostile to the Roman Catholic Church, this is a particularly egregious claim.

Here is a link to the full text of the Florida decision in pdf format:

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