ICE Seizes Domains, Assets of Alleged TV, Movie Pirates
Nine sites targeted in launch of anti-IP piracy initiative
By John Eggerton -- Broadcasting & Cable, 6/30/2010 5:57:47 PM
ICE and the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York also seized assets from Paypal, banks and advertising accounts, and searched residences in New York, New Jersey, Washington, and North Carolina.
Announcing the seizures on a Burbank soundstage (Walt Disney Studios) and flanked by members of the Motion Picture Association of America, ICE Assistant Secretary John Morton said that the sites had been run by people "who have no respect for creativity and innovation," according to a release from U.S. Immigration and Customers Enforcement.
According to Customs, the sites seized were NinjaVideo.net, NinjaThis.net, tvshack,net, movies-links.tv, filespump.com, now-movies.com, planetmoviez.com, thepiratecity.org, and zml.com.
"The American motion picture and television industry is one of our nation's most valuable cultural and economic resources," said Mike Robinson, chief of operations, content protection, for MPAA. "We are grateful to ICE, the Obama administration and the federal agencies that have made the protection of intellectual property for the United States."
The seizures follow the White House's June 22 unveiling of its first strategic plan for cracking down on intellectual property theft, including the pirating of TV shows, movies, and other online content.
"Today's action builds on the comprehensive federal IP enforcement strategy that Vice President Biden and White House IP czar Victoria Espinel laid out last week," said Rick Cotton, EVP and general counsel of NBCU, "and there's no question that it's great news for the millions of workers who depend on the creative industries to earn their living. The initiative by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the Department of Justice is critically important to ensure that American jobs are not hijacked by digital thieves, and that American innovation and creativity continue to drive U.S. economic growth."
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