When the European Parliament adopted its position on the proposed EU draft directive on criminal sanctions they also included the following safeguards, a fair use provision.
Member States shall ensure that the fair use of a protected work, including such use by reproduction in copies or audio or by any other means, for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship or research, does not constitute a criminal offence.
The MEPs also amended the proposal from the Commission on the matter of parallel importation:
Criminal sanctions shall not be applied in cases of parallel importation of original goods which have been marketed with the agreement of the right-holder in a country outside the European Union.
As announced in Official Journal C 252 of 18 September 2010 the European Commission decided to withdraw their proposal for a Directive on the criminal enforcement of intellectual property rights because member states didn’t want to adopt it. In particular the Dutch parliament notified the Commissioner Frattini that the EU lacks competence to adopt these measures. Criminal sanctions for enforcement these rights therefore did not become part of the EU acquis.
ACTA provides for criminal sanctions but does not include a “fair use” provision.