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Thursday, June 11, 2015

Here's What Happens When You Sell 20,000 Pirated DVDs on eBay

Posted By on Thu, Jun 11, 2015 at 12:36 PM

click to enlarge JOERI VAN VEEN/FLICKR
  • Joeri van Veen/Flickr

Forty-three-year-old San Francisco man Christopher Breejen was sentenced to 15 months in prison and must pay $117,439.50 in restitution for criminal copyright infringement. Breejen was charged with — and pleaded guilty to — importing counterfeit DVDs and selling them on eBay.

According to Bay City News, Breejen pleaded guilty on November 18 last year. Prosecutors said that between 2011 and 2014, Breejen sold 20,000 pirated DVDs online, many of them imported from Asia. After a tip from the Motion Picture Association of America, U.S. Customs and Border Protection launched an investigation that led to the seizure of 16 shipments of counterfeit discs.

The trade in knockoff DVDs is so prevalent that some eBayers have written illustrated guides to determining fake merchandise (such as this one posted in April). YouTube also features several video guides to sussing out unofficial DVDs.

Breejen will begin serving his sentence August 8.

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