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RCMP Cracks Down on Counterfeit DVDs

by Archives February 10, 2009

Over the past several weeks, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) arrested six movie pirates.
The RCMP announced on Jan. 28 that four individuals allegedly involved in illegal distribution of counterfeit DVDs had been arrested. Two days later they announced they seized over 12,000 pirated copies of new releases from two businesses in the Greater Toronto Area.
Piracy is the single largest threat to the motion picture industry in the United States according to the Motion Picture Association. An industry report released in 2005 claimed piracy cost the major American motion picture studios $6.1 billion worldwide. Sixty-two per cent of the losses came from piracy of hard goods, such as DVDs. The other 38 per cent of losses come from Internet piracy.
Each pirated DVD the RCMP confiscated last month was allegedly being sold for between $4 and $7, making the total value of the bust somewhere between $48,000 and $84,000.
And, according to RCMP media relations officer for Ontario Sgt. Marc LaPorte, the monetary value of seized material would have gone directly into the pirates’ pockets.
“With DVDs, we’re talking pure profit,” he said.
All of the alleged pirates arrested in January ran their businesses in Ontario. Tony Chan* has helped his father run a counterfeit DVD store for four years. “It’s a lucrative business,” Chan said. “Very, very lucrative.”
His father’s store can rake in $3,000 to $4,000 per weekend during the regular season.

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