- Three pirates who were offering illegal IPTV services were sentenced to imprisonment.
- The court was particularly harsh with them, as their operation was provocative to the authorities.
- Other illegal IPTV sellers in the UK call them stupid for how they had set up their operation.
Three Britons who have been offering illegal IPTV subscription packages to pubs, clubs, and homes, received custodial sentences of a total of 17 years of imprisonment for their actions by the Warwick Crown Court. The pirates were offering streaming services to their clients, who gained access to Premier League football matches for a very low cost compared to the that of legitimate broadcasters. The three men are Steven King (7.5 years), Paul Rolston (6.5 years), and Daniel Malone (3 years). The men’s clientele includes 1000 subscribers, while it’s estimated that they have made more than 5 million UK pounds over the ten years of their operation.
The three men did what they did through two registered business platforms, both owned and directed by Steven King, and named “Dreambox TV Limited” and “Digital Switchover Limited”. These businesses acted as the data streaming points for the IPTV network, broadcasting premium content of 20 entities from around the globe, without having a license to do so whatsoever. Characteristically, the judge commented about this operation and called it “dishonest and dodgy business”, while the court decided to punish them with more extended periods of imprisonment than what is usually given for similar offenses because the defendants attempted to undermine the investigation.
The Director of Legal Services of the Premier League, Kevin Plumb, has made the following statement:
“Today’s decision has provided further evidence that the law will catch up with companies and individuals that defraud rights owners and breach copyright. The custodial sentences issued here reflect the seriousness and the scale of the crimes. Using these services is unlawful, and fans should be aware that when they do so, they enter into agreements with illegal businesses. They also risk being victims of fraud or identity theft by handing over personal data and financial details.”
As these three men are not the only ones who offer illegal IPTV services in the UK, TorrentFreak reached out to them for a comment on how they plan to proceed from now on. One of them reportedly responded by admitting that their activity is illegal but pointing out that the problem is the pricing of the legal broadcasting sources. As he said, copyright owners should ask themselves why people keep coming to them for a subscription. The answer he gives to his own question is because that’s all the money they have left after working in a factory all week. The IPTV seller also added that selling to pubs is stupid as copyright owner agents are there all the time and that running everything through a company with your real name is retarded.
Do you think that illegal IPTV services are going to sunset soon, or is this just an isolated occasion of bashing pirates that went too far? Share your view in the comments section below, and don’t hesitate to do the same on our socials, on Facebook and Twitter.