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Web pirate seeks to appeal case

Chan argues HK law doesn't apply to 'Net

HONG KONG — The first man in the world to be charged for distributing movies on the Internet was granted permission to appeal his conviction.

Chan Nai-ming, whose screen name was “Big Crook,” appeared Wednesday before Hong Kong’s highest court, the Court of Final Appeal.

His lawyer argued that the Copyright Ordinance of Hong Kong doesn’t apply to the Internet but instead addresses distributing actual copies of a pirated work. He further argued that Chan only made the copies available for others to download and didn’t actively distribute the films.

Chan was arrested in January 2005 after customs officers found someone had uploaded three movies — “Daredevil,” “Red Planet” and “Miss Congeniality” — to a local BitTorrent discussion forum.

Hearing will resume May 9.

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