FBI makes arrest in ‘Wolverine’ case

NY man arrested for leaking tentpole to the Web

20th Century Fox moved a step closer to seeing justice served over the March leak of its superhero tentpole “X-Men Origins: Wolverine.”

The FBI arrested Gilberto Sanchez at his Bronx home early Wednesday for allegedly illegally uploading a pirated copy of the movie to megaupload.com. He was indicted on the charges by a federal grand jury in Los Angeles last Thursday.

A U.S. Attorney’s Office source said Sanchez has no apparent ties to the film industry, which does little to solve the mystery of how the 47-year-old allegedly came to possess an unfinished copy of the film a month before it hit theaters. A Fox spokesman said the studio also doesn’t know how Sanchez got the film.

The theft sent shockwaves through the industry and is seen as Hollywood’s most damaging piracy incident to date. Though the studio has never revealed how much the theft hit its bottom line, a Fox source put the figure in the tens of millions of dollars.

The studio estimates that 15 million people downloaded the movie. If the figure is accurate and half of those who saw “Wolverine” online would have gone to see it in theaters, that’s more than $50 million in lost revenues.

FBI spokeswoman Laura Eimiller said in a statement that Sanchez was taken without incident.

Fox hailed the news of the arrest. “We support the FBI’s actions and will continue to cooperate with law enforcement to prosecute individuals who steal our movies,” a spokesman said. If found guilty, Sanchez faces three years in jail and a fine.

Filed Under:

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 0

Leave a Reply

No Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More Biz News from Variety

Loading