Pre-Super Bowl IP Offensive: DOJ Charges One with Criminal Sports Broadcast Piracy, Seizes Counterfeit Merchandise

In pre-Super Bowl style, prosecutors charged a Michigan man with criminal copyright violations for allegedly operating nine (9) websites chock full of pirated sports broadcast videos (read the complaint below).

Separately, federal agents also seized a purported $4.8 million in knock-off Super Bowl merchandise imported into the U.S.

The U.S. Attorney’s message? Don’t risk any high-tech copyright shenanigans with unauthorized streams of this Sunday’s Super Bowl XLVI.

The timing is not surprising, especially after the public and tech community’s outcries quashed Hollywood’s hopes of getting poorly written SOPA and PIPA copyright bill through Congress.

The U.S. Department of Justice tried to snag a few points for carrying out President Obama’s mission of wanting to appease all sides in the SOPA/PIPA fiasco. That, however, is an impossible task.

Defendant Yonjo Quiroa will have to address a a few challenges in his criminal case:

  • He allegedly left an extensive electronic trail for investigators and prosecutors to follow.
  • The Whois registrations for all nine (9) websites listed in the complaint show the defendant’s apparent addresses and contact information.
  • The defendant’s apparent Facebook page (which contained the image above) lists links to various websites named in the complaint.

You can read the criminal copyright charges below, and browse a treasure trove of copyright cases on Justia Dockets.

Criminal Complaint: U.S. v. Yonjo Quiroa a/k/a “Ronaldo Solano”
Pro sorts web streaming copyright case