UK BitTorrent admin acquitted on fraud charge
Happy as a pig in sh*t
Updated Alan Ellis, the former admin of music BitTorrent tracker OiNK, was acquitted of conspiracy to defraud by a Middlesbrough court today.
In a landmark trial, the 26-year-old stood accused of making $300,000 in user donations from the invite-only service, which members used to share high quality and pre-release music.
Ellis' defence argued OiNK was analogous to Google, and that he was not responsible if members used it to infringe copyright.
He had been arrested in a dawn raid by Cleveland police in October 2007, acting on intelligence from the BPI. Police invited TV cameras to film the swoop, dubbed "Operation Ark Royal".
The IT worker smiled as the jury returned a not guilty verdict and made no comment as he left court, the Press Association reports.
The BPI said: "This is a hugely disappointing verdict which is out of line with decisions made in similar cases around the world, such as The Pirate Bay.
"The defendant made nearly £200,000 by exploiting other people's work without permission. The case shows that artists and music companies need better protection." ®
Updated to add comment from the BPI.
"He had been arrested in a dawn raid by Cleveland police in October 2007, acting on intelligence from the BPI."
So the BPI called their tamed police on this guy, no doubt after some serious lobbying to get it the political will, then and this is the unforgivable bit, they filmed it.
It is one thing to make these cop shows which show raids on dealers who have a load of drugs in their kitchen or something, but it was far from clear that this was an open and shut case.
Sue the Police and BPI !
And who, pray, will pay for all of this?
I'd suggest the bill goes to the BPI - after all, they were the ones who instigated this and told some real whoppers on their site about Oink!
AC for this, but mine's the one with the FOI request addressed to Cleveland Police....
BPI Unhappy = Bad News for us
"This is a hugely disappointing verdict which is out of line with decisions made in similar cases around the world, such as The Pirate Bay."
Ah yes, the Pirate bay trial, where the defence was amending the charge sheet as the trial was underway, AND the judge was found to be a member of a pro-copyright lobby group and it WASN'T a conflict of interest.
So they're disappointed that it wasn't a kangaroo stitch up and the correct legal principles were followed?
Expect TDL(tm) to be taken out for dinner on a lot mor yachts in the near future