ABS-CBN wins $250-M antipiracy case in US

THE largest media conglomerate in the Philippines won a $25-million piracy case in the United States on Wednesday.  In a statement, ABS-CBN Corp. said the US Federal Court in the Southern District of Florida ruled against Vonn Ryan Motomal of New Zealand for infringing on the copyrights and trademarks of the media company’s TV shows and movies. Motomal owned 90 pirate sites, which will all be transferred to the Lopez-led conglomerate.

“This is another example of our relentless campaign to enforce against all pirate sites wherever in the world the pirate is located.  This time, we have found the pirate operating out of Auckland, New Zealand,” ABS-CBN International Assistant Vice President of Global Anti-Piracy Elisha Lawrence said in the statement. 

This is another instance wherein ABS-CBN pursued a pirate, a content thief, and won, said Raffy Lopez, ABS-CBN Global COO.

“We will continue to challenge anyone who will undermine the integrity of our copyrighted body of work to rightfully protect the talented creative teams that worked hard to produce them,” he said. 

The media company recently filed a lawsuit before the US Federal District Court in Florida against 18 pirate sites for damages of over $12 million. 

Just last month ABS-CBN received a $10- million judgment from the US Federal District Court in Oregon against Jeffrey Ashby for damages from infringing the copyrights and trademarks of ABS-CBN by rebroadcasting the broadcast giant’s TV shows and movies on his pirate web sites.  

“We are continuing to receive reports that these pirate sites contain dangerous malware, which cause substantial harm to people, including identify theft of their financial information, phishing attacks where people receive e-mails from their banks asking for passwords and attacks on their e-mail contacts,” Lawrence said. “Just investigating these sites caused our computers to become infected with numerous viruses. We will not rest until every one of these pirate sites are down and the owners of these sites are held financially responsible and punished.”