Egypt court jails man for OSN content theft
ALEXANDRIA, March 8, 2017
An Egyptian court has ordered a record fine of EP100,000 ($5,650) and one-year imprisonment for a man found guilty of illegally distributing and selling stolen entertainment content without holding the required licences and without permission of the owners.
The Economic Court of Alexandria found the defendant guilty of two charges of setting up an illegal broadcast network as well as breaking intellectual property laws, an OSN statement said.
The court found that the defendant had been stealing content and illegally re-broadcasting satellite channels via the internet and an illegal cable network in contravention of Egypt’s Communications Regulations Law 10 of 2003, it said.
General Sharif Abdulhameed, director of Alexandria Investigation Department, said: “We view content theft seriously and will take stern action against offenders. The court ruling should serve as a reminder that stealing content or illegal sharing, through any channel, is a criminal offence. We request the cooperation of all, including the public, in refraining from encouraging such acts, which drain our national exchequer and impact our creative industry.”
OSN, the region’s premier entertainment company, whose channels were the subject of the case, welcomed the judgement as a major blow to the criminals who are threatening the creative industry in the region.
Sophie Moloney, OSN chief legal officer and spokesperson on Content Protection, said: “The judges have sent out a very strong message. Stealing content from OSN, and other legal owners, can land you in jail as well as face very big fines in Egypt.”
“We are extremely grateful to the Egyptian Police and enforcement authorities for their hard work on this case. Together we can do a lot to thwart the criminals who steal our content, and help to protect the rights of the creative people who make the wonderful entertainment programs and movies we all love to watch.”
OSN is part of an industry coalition, comprising broadcasters and satellite operators, who meet regularly to share intelligence on content theft, or piracy, and work together to raise awareness across the Mena region of the impact of this illegal activity.
In addition, OSN has built strong relationships with governments and enforcement agencies in Egypt, the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Bahrain, Oman and Kuwait to support legal action against criminals selling illegal satellite set-top-boxes and IPTV decoders, as well as those running illegal online streaming services.
To date, OSN has taken down numerous links that shared stolen content and participated in a significant number of raids across the region. OSN uses the latest encryption technology to identify its content and who may be distributing it without permission, it said. – TradeArabia News Service