news Officers from Green Valley Local Area Command and investigators from Australian Screen Association have executed a search warrant on a residential address in Busby, NSW during which they discovered a large number of allegedly illegally stored film and television titles.
The Australian Screen Association (ASA) aims to promote and protect the screen community in Australia. The ASA works to protect the creative works of its members and advocates for the enjoyment of film and television content through legal channels across multiple platforms. The organisation normally targets alleged distributors of pirated material with enforcement action rather than individual consumers.
On Thursday, 29th October, the group succeeded in locating a laptop along with a number of USB disks and hard drives used to store allegedly infringing copies of back catalogue and newly released films and television series. Currently, a 19 year old woman is also helping the police with their investigations in relation to the alleged illegal sale and distribution of film and TV titles online.
Along with 2,000 alleged copies of allegedly infringing back catalogue, a number of new film and television shows such as 50 shades of Grey and Ted 2 were allegedly being stored. These films and shows have been allegedly sold on Gumtree, a local classified ads and community site, for as little as 50 cents each and for $10 for entire seasons.
The successful warrant managed to seize a number of titles such as Cinderella, Fast and Furious 7, Mad Max Fury Road, 50 Shades of Grey, Spy, Ted 2, Jurassic World and Fantastic 4 (2015), among many other movies and shows.
Penalties for copyright crimes are severe. Under the Commonwealth Copyright Act, the penalties for these crimes are a maximum of $99,000 and/or 5 years jail for each offence committed.
Greg Fraser, Assistant Managing Director of Operations at the ASA said: “Today’s operation by NSW Police is an important step in shutting own illegal operations which take advantage of the hard work of the local creative community.”
Fraser added: “We hope that the seizure and subsequent court action acts as a strong deterrent to those individuals attempting to get involved in commercial scale infringement and sale of illegal content.”