Illegal downloading is so common that it’s considered socially acceptable and normal. However, if you’ve been accused of digital piracy copyright, this could be a very worrying time for you. It’s important that you seek legal help immediately to ideally have the case dismissed. If you are convicted of breaking a digital piracy copyright law such as distributing unauthorised files, you could receive a fine of £5,000 and may be imprisoned for up to 5 years.
You’ll no doubt be feeling frightened and very concerned as you read this. By taking early action you may be able to navigate your way to the best outcome. The best thing for you to do now is take on a copyright law and cybercrime solicitor who is competent and experienced.
The internet makes it very easy for entertainment to be downloaded, shared or reproduced and sold without any reimbursement to the producer. Digital piracy copyright-related lawbreaking is one of the most common types of cybercrime.
Have you been arrested for Digital Piracy Copyright?
If it’s you or somebody close to you that has been arrested or charged in connection to digital piracy copyright law breaking, there will be stress, concern and worry about what’s going to happen. What will the outcome be? Will you be imprisoned as a punishment for taking part in a cybercrime?
The best action for you to take now is to engage an experienced copyright solicitor who will be able to examine what’s happened and craft a strong defence for you. They may even be able to get the case dismissed for you so that you won’t have to stand trial. Alternatively, they may be able to negotiate a way to handle the situation outside of court.
Once you have a competent solicitor working on your case, you will feel a sense of relief.
Let’s explore the answers to some of the most typical questions and provide you with the support and guidance that you need.
What type of actions are considered breaking a digital piracy copyright law?
Copyright law offers the creator of a design or idea, legal protection to have exclusive rights over the use of that design or concept and seek payment for the use of the same. Whether it is computer software, games, music, movies, television or another form of entertainment; they are all protected from being used, copied or distributed without the producer’s consent.
Since the online influenced environment that we live in provides unparalleled access to all forms of entertainment online; the ability for copyrighted material to be reproduced and shared or sold online without reimbursement to the producer has increased dramatically, especially since access and reproduction can happen anywhere in the world.
File-sharing or streaming websites can be accessed by a mobile phone, a computer, television or set-top box and are used in contravention of copyright laws millions of times per day. However, copyright holders and law enforcement authorities rarely invest their efforts in pursuing the end user.
Vast efforts and specialist investigation teams such as the National Hi-Tech Crime Unit, Trading Standards Agency, London’s Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit (PIPCU) and the Federation Against Copyright Theft (FACT) are employing substantial resources in identifying those who develop tools or create online platforms to enable piracy. Here are some examples of digital piracy copyright law that may have led to the circumstances that you’re now in:
Operating a file sharing or streaming website – for example, The Pirate Bay in Sweden and Napster are well known digital copyright infringement cases. People were able to connect to the internet, use BitTorrent software and download movies, television shows and music that had a copyright on it. The outcome was a harsh penalty for breaching the Copyright Act.
Illegally stealing or sharing files that you haven’t paid for – this can result in as much as a £5,000 fine and imprisonment for five years.
Downloading music – using a piece of software to download videos from YouTube can be a crime.
Digitally bootlegging movies – duplicating and distributing films, music or other copyrighted material such as software is illegal.
Downloading and distributing content – there are various terms for this including ‘online Piracy’, ‘over-use’, ‘counterfeiting’, ‘hard-disk loading’ and ‘softlifting’.
Know that a creator doesn’t have to take any action to copyright their work, it is an automatic right. A producer may use a copyright sign on their material with their name and year of creation, but it’s not necessary to include the symbol to benefit from the protection of copyright.
What happens in a Copyright investigation?
When an investigation into a digital piracy copyright infringement takes place, it can be a worrying time. You may be worried that you will be imprisoned and your family won’t be able to afford to live in the same house and pay their bills. You feel as though your family life is now uncertain and unstable.
It’s critical that you take legal counsel on your digital piracy copyright case. Every case has its own circumstances, but it’s essential to seek guidance before the case progresses further.
Some cases can even be dismissed if you employ the right legal professionals who are specialists in this area.
You may have been falsely accused of digital copyright offences
Many people, including businesses, misunderstand the UK copyright law and can inadvertently commit an offence by infringing copyright. Legal action can be costly.
In every copyright case, there are both moral rights and economic rights. The moral rights are primarily centred on the power of the owner to be identified as the author. Economic rights are tied into creating copies, distributing, adapting or even broadcasting the work.
Copyright applies for the rest of the life of the author, and then another 70 years.
Instruct a legal professional as soon as possible
If you have been informed about infringement of copyright, it’s crucial to engage a specialist copyright lawyer to support and protect your interests. Whether you are a programmer, a software engineer or simply experimenting with software for educational and training purposes; if you are accused of developing such software or platforms, you must immediately seek the guidance of a specialist cybercrime solicitor.
If you reach the point of conviction, there is likely to be some financial costs and damages to pay.
The public relations aspect of this is that you and your business could suffer from damage to your reputation. It’s important to try to get the case dismissed or settled out of court rapidly. A damage to your reputation could affect future revenues, incoming investment and your image.
What should you do if you get arrested or charged with digital piracy copyright?
Copyright law can be complicated and changes regularly. Although it’s not compulsory for you to take legal representation, we recommend that you do so. With rules, regulations and restrictions changing frequently, it can be hard to keep up with the changes and to understand them.
Our digital copyright legal team keep current with changes and review the changes that take place. You will have access to a knowledgeable legal professional and the most current information and will be provided with the best defence and advice. You will be supported throughout the entire process and ensure that you get the best outcome.
The digital piracy copyright investigation is a form of a formal criminal investigation. It’s vital that you engage a solicitor to guide you and to protect your interests.
Hiring specialist legal knowledge will give you peace of mind. We advise that you get in touch with us as soon as you can so that we can assess your case before it develops further.
Can the police search my home?
The police can search your home as they will be seeking evidence. The authorities will have granted access to your property, and the police will carry through the search as law enforcement offices. The search warrant will extend to cover your digital devices including your computer, smartphones and tablets in addition to any other data container.
What type of sentence could you get for digital piracy copyright?
Depending on what you are convicted with, the sentence can be as much as five years imprisonment and a substantial fine.
If the offending is on a low level, usually a community order is imposed and a fine will also be issued.
What mitigating factors may be considered in sentencing?
When sentencing for digital piracy copyright infringements, your case will be looked at for whether it’s part of a group activity that is making a lot of money or something you have done just for yourself or a couple of friends.
Could you go to prison for Digital Piracy Copyright?
Digital piracy copyright is a serious offence, but it does not result in a prison sentence every time. By taking the right steps, many cases can be resolved outside of the Court system
The fine you pay could be up to £5000, and the prison sentence could be as much as five years.
If you have dependents, you will need to take into account how this may affect them. They may not have another income and it may also affect their general well-being to know that somebody who they love and admire has been imprisoned for an offence.
We recommend that you take on the services of an experienced and competent cybercrime solicitor as soon as possible.
Does a conviction for Digital Piracy Copyright go on your criminal record?
If you are convicted of a digital piracy copyright, your conviction will be noted on your CRB / police record. The period of the endorsement will depend on the type and the length of the sentence.
How Can Stuart Miller Solicitors Help?
Our cybercrime solicitors will study the prosecution’s case carefully and identify material supporting your defence. Not only that, we will ensure the prosecution have executed their duty and proven, beyond any reasonable doubt at all, that it was actually you sitting behind the accused computer and IP address which may have facilitated the commission of the offences.
If need be, we will instruct computer experts and forensic analysts to provide independent evidence supporting your case. We will gather witness statements and pro-actively uncover any other material which may guarantee the route of success in the case.
Our lawyers not only have access to renowned and leading barristers who will be called in to meet with you, we also have great relationships with computer experts who can be engaged to give favourable evidence in your case. These experts can not only extract evidence from your computers and servers in any format; they can also present useful material to the court.
What will happen when I instruct a cybercrime lawyer?
When you contact us to instruct us to be your cybercrime lawyer in your digital piracy copyright case, we can then contact the police to find out more about why you are being accused. We can then look into the information that you’ve given us to find a way to give you defence.
You will feel a lot more at ease about the situation as you’ll know that we are handling it for you. We have a specialist team who are very up to date on copyright rules and regulations.
Would you like to discuss your case before instructing us?
If you’d like to have a no obligation chat with us before you instruct us to take your case, then contact us today.
In addition to giving you a free consultation, we can also represent you at the police station if you’ve been arrested. We can look at securing your legal aid.
Please contact us for a face to face meeting or a telephone call. There is a WhatsApp link on this page if that is your preference.
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