AMSTERDAM — An appeals court Thursday blocked the publication of the Dutch translation of a Russian children's book in the Netherlands, saying the story was stolen from the popular "Harry Potter" books.
The decision by the Amsterdam Court of Appeal reaffirms a lower court ruling that the stories by Russian author Dmitry Yemets about a magical girl named Tanja Grotter too closely resemble J.K. Rowling's best-selling character.
The judges rejected the argument from Byblos publishers in Amsterdam that the Russian work is a parody of the Potter series. It said the story violated copyright law and ordered Byblos to reimburse legal fees of $3,000 to the British author.
Byblos owner Boudewijn Richel said the Harry Potter stories had influenced the Russian stories but maintained that they are "independent literary works."