Big fine for Baltic pressing plant

September 2007

Record labels

Baltic Optical Disc, the largest CD replicating plant in the Baltic States, has been ordered to pay a coalition of record companies a €500,000 payout after a Lithuanian court ruled it was guilty of music piracy.The civil action, brought jointly by the public prosecutor and 13 IFPI member companies, related to large scale pirate CD manufacture in 2001.  The claim stemmed from police and customs’ seizures of more than 210,000 pirate CDs containing a mix of predominantly international and Polish repertoire. Forensic experts at IFPI traced the origin of the illegal discs, found in Vilnius and on the Czech/Polish border, back to the Baltic Optical Disc factory.  This conclusion was confirmed by investigators at the Lithuanian government’s forensic laboratories. The judge ruled that Baltic Optical Disc should pay €494,000 in compensation to the record companies whose repertoire was pirated, as well as more than €5,000 in costs.  The court imposed the maximum compensation award it could, given the numbers of discs manufactured.

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