Russian Couple Arrested in EUR 1 Billion Film Piracy Case

Jul 21 2010 - 14:07

The Russian authorities have recently arrested and filed criminal charges against a Russian couple Ivan and Irina Podorozhnikovymi, who registered and hosted a file-sharing website called Interfilm, where they uploaded pirated movies allegedly causing almost EUR 1 billion (USD 1.25 billion) in damages.

According to the blog TorrentFreak, reporting on the latest news on the BitTorrent protocol and file sharing, Interfilm offered pre-released, camcorded movies with links to piracy groups outside the country. The husband and wife are known online as ‘Ripper’ and ‘Nadezhda’.

Police have also arrested several staff members, located some of the website’s most active users and may open criminal cases against those who kept large numbers of downloaded movies on their personal computers or uploaded them on their own websites.

In 2007 and 2008, Interfilm was one of the most popular BitTorrent trackers. On May 26, 2009, the Ministry of Internal Affairs carried out a raid on the tracker, after receiving complaints from the Russian Anti-Piracy Organization (RAPO).

According to TorrentFreak, although Interfilm had closed down after the raid, it reappeared at LeaseWeb in the Netherlands. In addition to using the Interfilm.ru domain, the website is allegedly operational from BitHouse.org.

In February 2010, the Russian authorities seized the domain of Russia’s most popular file-sharing website, Torrents.ru, which immediately moved to a new location, Rutracker.org.

For more information, please contact Jelena Jankovic at our Balkan Regional Office.

Source: The Moscow Times, TorrentFreak

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