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Italy's 'Operation Mouse' and 'Copy Wrong' Operations
By Jon Newton,
(more articles from this author)
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One of Europe's largest net piracy rings has been shut down by Italian police, a UK BBC report says here, continuing, "Italy's Guardia di Finanza staged 'Operation Mouse' over the last six months to smash the sophisticated counterfeiting and sales organisation.

"The huge network was uncovered by investigators following up a tip off about a single e-mail address.

"Now the Guardia has evidence of more than 95,000 suspect e-mail addresses and a net-based sales network that was capable, it is estimated, of an annual turnover of 2bn euros (£1.41bn).

"Pirated goods bought by customers from a network of websites were sent out by post."

Fake software from Adobe, Autodesk, Macromedia and Microsoft was being offered by the pirates as well as albums by Madonna and Robbie Williams and Italian versions of recently released movies such as Gangs of New York and Die Another Day, says the Beeb story, adding,

"So far 181 people have been charged under Italian copyright laws and more than 10,000 others who produced, sold or bought counterfeit goods are also being investigated.

Copy Wrong

In another report, thanks to a "steady, effective" cooperation between Italy's Society of Authors and Publishers (SIAE) and the, "Italian police corps Carabineers, the big 'Copy Wrong operation' has been recently concluded", says an English-language press release from the SIAE.

"It's one of the first anti-piracy operations set out after the coming into force of the 68/2003 decree, implementing the Directive 2001/ 29/CE on Copyright and Neighbouring Rights in the Information Society," the SIAE says, continuing:

"Besides embittering the sanctions against everybody who circulates illicit carriers at any rate, the 68/2003 decree also gives a larger role to SIAE in the struggle against piracy, and widens the SIAE inspectors' powers.

"The wide national 'Copy Wrong operation' was not only intended to identify the subjects involved in the reproduction and distribution activity, but also to trace the connected reproduction and distribution channels and ascertain the different responsibilities of each subject taking part in the various stages (manufacturers, sellers, buyers).

"The agreement between SIAE Anti-piracy Services and Carabineers has also allowed to improve the struggle in every area of attack against intellectual property: VHS, DVD, CD, audiocassettes, software, reproduction of books over 15% of their content, as allowed by the law.

"The results of 'Copy Wrong operation': 26.302 CD, 5.209 CD- ROM, 4.095 DVD, 2.867 videocassettes, 28 masterizing plants, 9.059 books seized. 41 persons have been arrested and more 201 charged."

Rumours that the RIAA and/or IFPI assisted in the preparation of the above text are entirely without foundation.


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