Record Labels, Music Publishers, Internet
Dutch police and the criminal anti-piracy enforcement team of the FIOD-ECD have completed an investigation into organised criminal groups resulting in the seizure of 17,000 pirate CDs and DVDs and the arrest of six people. Over sixty police offers carried out simultaneous raids on different addresses including a CD/DVD plant. A representative of the Indian Music Association was present because over 15,000 of the pirate DVDs seized were in hindi. Other DVDs included pirated copies of Finding Nemo and Lord of The Rings. Greek figures show that over 1.1 million CDs, CDRs and MCs were seized in 2003 under raids organised by the IFPI (an increase of 46.38% on 2002). In addition police sized a further 521,345 units in other raids. In 2003 1,941 individuals were prosecuted in Greece for music piracy offences. In the Ukraine a joint investigation between law enforcement agencies and the IFPI led to a major raid on a illegal warehouse. 210,000 CD and DVD inlays were seized along with more than 26,000 units. The IFPI say that almost all of the pirated material found in the Ukraine, Poland and other eastern European countries originate in Russia and are then ‘packaged’ locally across the eastern block. As Lithuania joins the European Union the Police Commissioner General has set up a Intellectual Property Protection subdivision within the state Crime Investigation Bureau. The unit is complemented by the introduction of a new criminal code which came into force in 2003. Russia is in the IFPI’s ‘top ten’ of targeted problem markets. Jay Berman, IFPI Chairman has said ‘copyright piracy is a critical problem in Russia … Russia has the potential to become a highly successful music market but first it is essential to bring its spiralling levels of piracy and copyright infringement under control”. Nigeria and South Africa are two examples of the problems facing the African continent and local music companies face major challenges from imported pirate discs which originate from South East Asia (in particular Malaysia and Thailand). In just two months in 2003 South African police in Durban intercepted six containers holding more than 1,500,000 discs in transit to Nigeria. The IFPI continues to organise raids in countries where the discs originate: The IFPI is continuing a two year long investigation in Malaysia against the countries largest organised pirate distribution syndicate, seizing 350,000 audio discs in 2003. Economic Crimes Division officers in central Bangkok, Thailand, seized 40,000 pirated discs in one raid. Thailand now has a dedicated Intellectual property and Intellectual Trade Court which provides search warrants to facilitate raids.
See : http://www.ifpi.org
Source : IFPI Enforcement Bulletin Issue 22 March 2004, © IFPI 2004