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Federal Internet crime charges for pirated movies

A Pennsylvania man has been arrested and charged with pirating movies at a Moon Township drive-in theater. Prosecutors claim that the man's actions were part of a larger scheme to unlawfully record movies and sell them on the black market. There is no word on whether the other individuals who are believed to have involvement in the theft have also been charged. As of the time of this report, the man is free on bond as he awaits trial in the Internet crime case.

Investigators claim that the 38-year-old man went to the Dependable Drive-In movie theater with the intent of pirating a Cameron Diaz film entitled "Sex Tape." He is alleged to have recorded audio of the film with the intent of sending the files to others over the web. Prosecutors claim that some team members would record video of newly released films in traditional theaters, while others would record the audio tracks from drive-in theaters, which use technology to send high-quality sound through car stereo systems. Once the files were sent to the same place, they would be put together to create a pirated copy of the film.

The Motion Picture Association of America sends theater owners periodic updates of license plates that they believe belong to individuals who seek to illegally record video and audio of new movies. When the Moon Township theater owner saw a vehicle that had one of the listed license plates, he called police. At that point, an arrest was made.

As this Internet crime case moves ahead, the Pennsylvania man is expected to remain free on bond. Prosecutors allege that he has conspired with others to pirate films for nearly three years. If he is convicted, the man faces up to eight years in prison.

Source: The New York Times, "Feds: Pennsylvania Man Pirated Movie Audio at Drive-In", March 4, 2016

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