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Saturday 23.06.2018 | Name days: Līga
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Two film streaming sites shut down in Latvia for violation of copyrights

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUAt the end of February, State Police shut down two popular film streaming websites in Latvia. Police say those websites were illegally streaming films. The estimated damage caused to copyright holders by those two websites is more than EUR 200,000. Four persons are held suspect. The investigation continues.

Internet monitoring activities helped State Police Cyber-crimes Prevention Office find information about two websites that performed unlicensed streaming of films – www.movieslv.com and www.cinemalive.tv. In cooperation with association For Legal Content, copyright owners of the illegally streamed content turned to the police. The estimated damages caused by the illegal content streaming websites exceed EUR 200,000, as reported by State Police.

Police commenced a criminal process in accordance with Part 3 of Section 148 of the Criminal Law – infringement of copyright or neighbouring right if it is committed in large scale or by an organised group, and Part 1 of Section 148 of the Criminal Law – infringement of copyright or neighbouring right, if such infringement has caused substantial harm to rights and interests protected by law of a person.

As part of the criminal process, State Police Cyber-crimes Prevention Office performed a number of measures to cease criminal acts. As a result, both websites were taken down on 28 February.

Continuing the investigation, State Police performed searches in several cities in Latvia, including Riga and Liepaja. Police confiscated computers, different data storage devices, accounting documents and other evidence.

Police found out during the investigation that one of the two streaming websites provided users access to approximately 2,500 movies free of charge from 2013 onward. It should be mentioned that the majority of those movies were offered in Latvian language and intended for Latvian audience. Police also found out that 71% of all visitors came from Latvia. Information acquired during the investigation also shows that approximately 27,000 of regular users used the illegal service every day. They also promoted the website on their social network profiles, attracting new users. Police say administrators of the website gained income from advertisements.

To avoid being discovered by authorities, administrators performed several major changes to the websites over the course of the years.

State Police intends to continue performing monitoring of Latvia’s internet space to identify resources that provide illegal services.


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