Sweden plans this week to charge the people running Pirate Bay, the popular Bittprrent-tracker site.
Pirate Bay helps Web surfers share copyrighted music and film files, which is illegal in many countries, including Sweden.
Public prosecutor Hakan Roswall said he will charge the Swedish site's organizers with accessory and conspiracy to break copyright law, which could lead to fines or up to two years in prison.
The charges will be filed in a district court on January 31.
The Motion Picture Association of America and the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) are among those who have called for action to shut down the site.
"It's not merely a search engine. It's an active part of an action that aims at, and also leads to, making copyright protected material available," Roswall said, according to Reuters.
"It's a classic example of accessory -- to act as intermediary between people who commit crimes, whether it's in the physical or the virtual world," he said.
But the people behind the site say they cannot be held responsible for material that is being spread.
Pirate Bay does not charge users and earns money from advertisers. Roswall believes advertisers could have second thoughts about using Pirate Bay if a guilty verdict is handed down.