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Wednesday, March 07, 2007
Overseas film makers win pirated DVD case


Three giant overseas film makers are delighted to see that China is on the track of combating piracy as a Shanghai court yesterday threw the book at their DVD infringers, the Xinhua News Agency reported Tuesday.

The Shanghai NO.1 Intermediate People's Court handed down a verdict yesterday, ordering Shanghai Le Ying Audio Visual Products Ltd. to stop copying, producing and selling pirated DVD copies of Walt Disney Pictures, Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc., and New Line Cinem's movies.

The company was also fined 25,000 yuan (US$3,227) to cover the plaintiffs' losses incurred by copyright infringement, and the court costs.

The three allege that their DVD products, including New Line Cinema's "The Lord of the Rings", Disney's "National Treasure" as well as "The Incredibles", and Warner's "Before Sunset" fell prey to Le Ying's illegal distribution last year.

Their contention was supported by copies of pirated DVD they previously obtained from Le Ying Audio Visual Products Ltd.

Tuesday's trial took place in the absence of the defendant who failed to appear in court when summoned. The court ruled in favor of the plaintiffs, but their request for the infringer to offer a public apology was not supported by the court for lack of evidence.

The Chinese government has moved to reinforce the intellectual property rights (IPR) protection by toughing the related civil and criminal liabilities. Copyright and patent law violators now face longer jail terms and higher fines, making it financially impossible for them to commit such crimes again.



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