Anti-piracy initiative results in arrests

Operation Blackout seizes 2.6 million illegal discs

BERLIN -– Operation Blackout, the annual anti-piracy initiative that covers the Christmas and Lunar New Year holiday periods, resulted in the arrest of 675 suspected pirates in the Asia Pacific region.

Backed by the Motion Picture Association and enacted by local Police forces, the sweep of producers, distributors and sellers of pirated movies in 12 countries, stretched to Internet distributors and illegal camcording.

Some 2.6 million pirate discs and 1,200 optical disc burners were seized in 894 raids.

Biggest numbers of disc seizures were in Australia, China and The Philippines. By far the largest number of arrests was in Thailand and India.

“I am pleased to report that our tough actions throughout the year and our new focus on the Internet as an increasingly popular channel for piracy has had an impact,” Mike Ellis, senior VP and regional director, Asia-Pacific for the MPA, said. “What we are seeing now in some countries is more covert pirate activity – many have moved underground or have found ways and means to cover their tracks.”

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