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Crime Piracy The Courts Your Rights Online

In Mississippi: 15-Year Jail Sentence For Selling Pirated Movies and Music 339

New submitter patella.whack writes "A guilty plea for six counts of selling counterfeit media gets a defendant 15 years in Mississippi. An undercover reporter from the Attorney General's Intellectual Property Theft Task Force managed to buy a total of five copied movies and one music CD from the defendant, who had 10,500 pirated discs at home and two prior convictions: one for assaulting a police officer 17 years ago and one for CD piracy that got him a year under house arrest. Says the RIAA: '[This] highlights the fact that the individuals engaging in these activities are frequently serial criminals for whom IP theft is simply the most convenient and profitable way they could steal from others.' Frequently serial criminals? 15 years? I wonder how much of his sentence can be attributed to his priors rather than to other factors."
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In Mississippi: 15-Year Jail Sentence For Selling Pirated Movies and Music

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  • by Nutria ( 679911 ) on Tuesday November 13, 2012 @05:28PM (#41973653)

    It's not selling pirated movies, it's selling pirated movies on an industrial scale, which is *completely* different from sharing a dozen MP3s.

  • by AttyBobDobalina ( 2525082 ) on Tuesday November 13, 2012 @05:31PM (#41973713)
    Because no one would "plead guilty" in exchange for a 15 year sentence. That's not much of a plea bargain. The article mentioned seizures of weapons as well. Missouri has some form of "three strikes" law, which uses the phrase "prior and persistent offender." One wonders whether this sentence was lighter than what might have resulted had he been charged for gun possession.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 13, 2012 @06:35PM (#41974621)

    in other news, you get 90 days jail time for shooting bicyclists with a 45 caliber while drunk driving...


  • by Jafafa Hots ( 580169 ) on Tuesday November 13, 2012 @07:12PM (#41975049) Homepage Journal

    "Assault of a police officer takes real brains..."

    Or a lying cop. Which happens. A lot.

    Trust me, I can tell you from personal experience. 1 false arrest, 1 assault on me by a cop threatening false arrest because I witnessed him do something wrong.

  • by 0111 1110 ( 518466 ) on Tuesday November 13, 2012 @08:15PM (#41975631)

    Every story without direct video footage starts with trust. I was actually charged with assaulting a police officer. In the presence of 20-30 other cops. I'm just a shy, geeky, overweight, middle aged guy. I'm also extremely non-violent. The cop in question was much larger than me as well. Anyone who knows me knows that such an accusation is utterly ridiculous.

    Some people have yet to realize what real cops are actually like. This is solely due to lack of contact with them. They will not hesitate to lie in court and to falsely accuse you of many things. None of the defense attorneys I consulted were at all surprised by my story. They see it all the time. The cops commonly do such things because they can. The system lets them get away with it. They are just grown up schoolyard bullies. Sociopaths with unlimited power and not even a hint of a conscience.

    Just a bit of friendly advice for everyone: If a cop swears at you DO NOT swear back at them under any circumstances. It may seem fair, but the cop won't see it that way. You'll be lucky if you only end up in the hospital with broken bones. You may end up with brain damage. You may end up dead or in prison for many years based on false accusations.

    No matter what you say or how much more plausible your version of events may seem or how incredibly stupid the cop is nearly every judge and many juries will believe the cop's ridiculous story just because he is a cop. Many defendents aren't willing to roll the dice and take deals. That's what I did. I could poke holes in some details of the cop's bullshit story and prove those holes 100%. Prove that he lied in some details, but I could not prove my innocence. I could not prove that I did not punch him. And I didn't trust a potential lily white jury with no exposure to real life cops to decide my fate. Like you, they don't want to believe that such things really happen. So they don't. Real cops are nothing like the way they are portrayed on TV or in films. Well maybe Bad Lieutenant.

  • by nbauman ( 624611 ) on Tuesday November 13, 2012 @11:55PM (#41977087) Homepage Journal

    Maybe it's my observer bias, but that figure sounds too low to me.

    Those reports are only cases that were reported in newspapers. Lots of cases don't get into the newspapers.

    Back in the 1960s, newspapers had a taboo on stories about police abuse. That came up during demonstrations against the war in Vietnam, and counter-culture issues generally. I'd go to a non-violent demonstration, get beaten up by the cops, see other people get seriously injured, pick up the newspapers the next morning, and see a report on the demonstration written exclusively from quotes from the cops, with no mention of police violence. There was a newspaper called the East Village Other that used to print photographs of cops beating up demonstrators that the regular newspapers wouldn't print.

    One reason for that was that the cops supplied reporters with news about crime, and the reporters didn't want to alienate their sources.

    The cops used to beat up black people all the time. It was only when they started beating up privileged white kids that it became an issue.

    The big change came in the 1968 Democratic Convention in Chicago, where Mayor Daley decided that the First Amendment didn't apply to people who disagreed with him. The great thing was that a lot of the out-of-town reporters -- the same guys who had been ignoring police brutality up to then -- got their own asses kicked by the cops. It was in all the national newspapers, in Life magazine, on TV. It sort of broke the taboo.

    But if you get beaten up by the cops, even if you file a complaint, and you call up a newspaper reporter to tell him about it, the chances of his doing a story about it are pretty low. A lot of these caught-on-video cases didn't make it into the newspapers until the video came out.

    Here in New York City, there was lots of police misconduct during political demonstrations -- against the Iraq war, against the Republican Convention, and now Occupy Wall Street. Now a lot of it is caught on video. They even had a high-level office, Anthony Bolognia, get caught on video spraying protesters who were obeying all the laws.

    And in my personal contact with cops on the street, I've found a lot of them to be rude, abusive bullies. I approach a cop in with a polite request, and his attitude to me is, "fuck off."

    So you get points for looking up the data. Next step -- validating the data. I think the misconduct rate is much higher.

Things are not as simple as they seems at first. - Edward Thorp