Pirate- Bay-verdict by fjzhangm


									Guilty verdict in Pirate Bay case
Today, Stockholm District Court passed its verdict on the four people charged with complicity in breach of the Copyright Act. The Court sentenced each of them to 1 year’s imprisonment. The Court dismissed the charge of preparation for breach of the Copyright Act. The matter in the case was criminal liability for complicity (aiding and abetting) in breaches of the Copyright Act of the individuals involved in the operation of the filesharing service, The Pirate Bay. The filesharing service used BitTorrent technology to make it possible for other people to share computer files containing, for example, copyright-protected music and films. It has emerged that, on The Pirate Bay’s website, it was possible for computer users to upload and store torrent files which referred to separate computer files which contained, for example, a music album, to search for “torrent files” and download these to the user’s own computer, as well as, using a ”tracker”, to contact other users to enable filesharing of the music album to take place. The actual filesharing with other users then took place within the framework of a ”swarm” of users who set about filesharing the album. In its verdict, the District Court found that, through the use of The Pirate Bay’s services, filesharing of music, films and computer games took place to the extent alleged by the District Prosecutor in his indictment, and that this filesharing constitutes an illegal transfer to the general public of copyright-protected performances. Those who engaged in filesharing were thereby objectively guilty of infringement of copyright; a breach of the Copyright Act.

By providing a website containing, according to the findings of the District Court, highlydeveloped search functions, simple uploading and downloading procedures, and by linking the tracker to the website, the defendants abetted the offences which the filesharers were objectively guilty of. The District Court finds that the defendants collaborated and functioned as a "team" in operating and further developing The Pirate Bay. They also knew that files of copyright-protected material were being shared. Accordingly, they intentionally abetted infringement of copyright by others, and are thereby guilty of complicity in an offence. The sentence (penalty) has been determined taking account of the fact that the complicity by the defendants involved an extensive making available of other parties’ rights, and that the operation was run on a commercial basis and in an organised form.

Since the District Court finds that the defendants are guilty of an offence, they shall pay compensation and damages to the record and film companies whose rights were unlawfully exploited. The companies’ claims relate both to reasonable compensation for the unlawful exploitation of their rights and compensation (damages) for certain distribution and market losses. The claims – which were based on estimates of the size of the losses – amounted to over SEK 100 million. The District Court has, however, set the compensation and damages at a lower amount. In view of the circumstances of the case, the Court estimated the compensation for damages at just over SEK 30 million. -----PRESS CONFERENCE: The Judges of the District Court will be available today to answer questions from the media from 11.15 in Room 9 of the District Court.

Last amended: 17 April 2009 For more information, please contact: Tomas Norström District Court Judge 08-561 650 00

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