• United States



by Dave Gradijan

U.S. Man Gets Prison for Copyright Violations

Aug 07, 20072 mins
CSO and CISOData and Information Security

An Illinois man was sentenced to two years in prison for violating copyright law through the unauthorized sale of video games on his website, the U.S. Department of Justice (DoJ) announced.

Judge Leonie Brinkema of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia also sentenced Timothy W. Hall, 35, of Mount Vernon, Ill., to pay a US$1,200 fine.

Hall pleaded guilty May 8 to one count of criminal copyright infringement for his unlawful distribution of hundreds of thousands of copyright works on his website, Hall advertised the sale of hundreds of video games for Xbox, GameCube, PlayStation 2 and other platforms, on recordable CDs. Hall also offered DVDs containing movies and television programs, the DoJ said.

From about 2001 to late 2006, Hall was paid more than $266,000 for the unlawful reproduction and distribution of the games and movies, he acknowledged during his guilty plea.

On May 10, 2006, an undercover agent of the U.S. FBI placed an order on Hall’s website for copies of 70 Xbox games and 48 episodes of the television series 24 on DVD. The agent received his order at a location in Virginia on Aug. 7, 2006, and the package contained 83 unlabeled DVDs with the games and movies that the agent had ordered.

Hall sold more than 100 pirated works to customers in the Eastern District of Virginia, receiving more than $3,000 for the sales, the DoJ said.

— Grant Gross, IDG News Service (Washington Bureau)