Intellectual Property | Real Estate | Technology | Software

INTERNET WARNING: Man shares Deadpool movie on facebook, ends up with criminal charges!

Jun 30th, 2017 | By | Category: Copyright Litigation

Illegal movie sharing on the internet through torrents, streaming and facebook posting!

streaming video atty

Introduction

This blog is a public notice and warning to be careful before sharing books, movies, software, and other digital content online.  While it may seem like a totally innocent act, as this blog notes, it could also lead to very serious legal problems.  In this  case a Fresno man was arrested after posting a movie on facebook.  The movie was “Deadpool.”  After posting the video allegedly 8 days after the release in theaters, the video got over 5 million video views.  This of course triggered the powers that be into action and to make a strong statement against such conduct, to the extent of charging the man with a crime.  This makes it so important that parents discuss this issue with their kids.  Something like this could devastate their future if convicted of criminal copyright infringement.

What is “Deadpool” movie?

According to wikipedia:

“Deadpool (Wade Winston Wilson) is a fictional antihero appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. Created by artist/writer Rob Liefeld and writer Fabian Nicieza, the character first appeared in The New Mutants #98 (cover-dated February 1991). Initially Deadpool was depicted as a supervillain when he made his first appearance in The New Mutants and later in issues of X-Force, but later evolved into his more recognizable antiheroic persona. Deadpool, whose real name is Wade Wilson, is a disfigured and mentally unstable mercenary with the superhuman ability of an accelerated healing factor and physical prowess. The character is known as the “Merc with a Mouth” because of his talkative nature and tendency to break the fourth wall, which is used by writers for humorous effect and running gags. The character’s popularity has seen him feature in numerous other media. In the 2004 series Cable & Deadpool, he refers to his own scarred appearance as “Ryan Reynolds crossed with a Shar Pei” Reynolds himself would eventually portray the character in the 2009 film X-Men Origins: Wolverine and reprised the role in the 2016 film Deadpool.”

Allegations made in grand jury indictment

Here is a screenshot of the allegations I was able to pull up from the grand jury indictment that was filed in the District Court in Fresno (Central District of California:

copyright defense attorney

An indictment contains allegations that a defendant has committed a crime. Every defendant is presumed to be innocent until and unless proven guilty in court.

Criminal Copyright Law Sections Cited:

Here are the copyright law sections cited in the indictment above:

18 U.S.C. 506 (a)(1)(B) 

(a) Criminal Infringement.—

(1) In general.—Any person who willfully infringes a copyright shall be punished as provided under section 2319 of title 18, if the infringement was committed—
(A) for purposes of commercial advantage or private financial gain;

(B)

by the reproduction or distribution, including by electronic means, during any 180–day period, of 1 or more copies or phonorecords of 1 or more copyrighted works, which have a total retail value of more than $1,000; or
(C) by the distribution of a work being prepared for commercial distribution, by making it available on a computer network accessible to members of the public, if such person knew or should have known that the work was intended for commercial distribution

18 U.S.C. 2319 (a) and (C)(1) – This section sets forth the penalties for criminal copyright infringement:

(a) Any person who violates section 506(a) (relating to criminal offenses) of title 17 shall be punished as provided in subsections (b), (c), and
(d) and such penalties shall be in addition to any other provisions of title 17 or any other law.

(b)Any person who commits an offense under section 506(a)(1)(A) of title 17

(1)  shall be imprisoned not more than 5 years, or fined in the amount set forth in this title, or both, if the offense consists of the reproduction or distribution, including by electronic means, during any 180-day period, of at least 10 copies or phonorecords, of 1 or more copyrighted works, which have a total retail value of more than $2,500;
(2) shall be imprisoned not more than 10 years, or fined in the amount set forth in this title, or both, if the offense is a felony and is a second or subsequent offense under subsection (a); and
(3)  shall be imprisoned not more than 1 year, or fined in the amount set forth in this title, or both, in any other case.

Any person who commits an offense under section 506(a)(1)(B) of title 17

(1)  shall be imprisoned not more than 3 years, or fined in the amount set forth in this title, or both, if the offense consists of the reproduction or distribution of 10 or more copies or phonorecords of 1 or more copyrighted works, which have a total retail value of $2,500 or more;
(2) shall be imprisoned not more than 6 years, or fined in the amount set forth in this title, or both, if the offense is a felony and is a second or subsequent offense under subsection (a); and

(3) shall be imprisoned not more than 1 year, or fined in the amount set forth in this title, or both, if the offense consists of the reproduction or distribution of 1 or more copies or phonorecords of 1 or more copyrighted works, which have a total retail value of more than $1,000.d)Any person who commits an offense under section 506(a)(1)(C) of title 17

(1)  shall be imprisoned not more than 3 years, fined under this title, or both;
(2) shall be imprisoned not more than 5 years, fined under this title, or both, if the offense was committed for purposes of commercial advantage or private financial gain;
(3) shall be imprisoned not more than 6 years, fined under this title, or both, if the offense is a felony and is a second or subsequent offense under subsection (a); and
(4) shall be imprisoned not more than 10 years, fined under this title, or both, if the offense is a felony and is a second or subsequent offense under paragraph (2).

(e)

(1)  During preparation of the presentence report pursuant to Rule 32(c) of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure, victims of the offense shall be permitted to submit, and the probation officer shall receive, a victim impact statement that identifies the victim of the offense and the extent and scope of the injury and loss suffered by the victim, including the estimated economic.

Resources

For more information on criminal copyright laws read this.

Warning for parents

Parents, please talk to your kids about downloading and uploading copyrighted content.  So many things that are digital are subject to federal copyright laws such as photos, images, lyrics, movies, films, software, video games, comics, etc.  When big movie production companies, movie producers and software providers find their products being shared online and injuring the marketplace for their products, you can often expect a strong legal response, and in many cases you may be facing the threat of money damages for infringement, money that is better out to use for college tuition or some other purpose.

Social Media Law Firm

Our firm can help with intellectual property and internet disputes including software law, cease and desist letters, DMCA takedown, social media account takeovers, cyberbullying, domain disputes, internet defamation and copyright infringement law.  In most cases (non-litigation or arbitration) we can structure a low flat rate legal fee.  Contact us for a free confidential initial discussion if you are facing legal issues.  We can be reached at (877) 276-5084.  We have are licensed to practice law in California and Arizona and accept federal trademark, copyright, and cable TV piracy across the United States subject to local court rules.

 

 

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We are a business and civil litigation firm with a focus on copyright infringement cases involving illegal movie downloads (torrent cases such as London Has Fallen, ME2 Productions and Malibu Media defense), software audits (ex. Microsoft audits, SPLA, Autodesk audit notification letter, Siemens PLM defense, SIIA, Adobe and Business Software Alliance defense) and other software vendors threatening piracy and infringement. We also handle cases involving internet law, anti-SLAPP, media law, right of publicity, trademarks & domain name infringement, and we have a niche practice area handling California BRE licensing disputes, accusations, subpoena response, statement of issues and investigations. We have offices in San Francisco, Beverly Hills, Newport Beach, San Diego & Phoenix, Arizona and accept federal copyright and trademark cases nationwide. All content on our website is general legal information only and not a substitute for legal advice, and should not be relied upon. Decisions to hire counsel should not be based on advertising alone. Blogs, videos and podcasts are authored by Steve Vondran, Esq. unless otherwise noted. We can be reached at (877) 276-5084.

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