The convictions follow the 2013 raid of five homes in Apeldoorn, Enschede, Vlagtwedde and the Hague which resulted in the 2015 convictions of two pirates. The news follows a claim by Dutch cable operator Ziggo, which is seeking €1.6 million in damages from a 36-year old man from Apeldoorn who supplied card-sharing codes to his clients.
Two defendants received 200 hours of community service and three months of conditional sentencing. The third defendant received 240 hours of community service and four months of conditional sentencing. The three defendants also forfeited amounts of €52,245, €53,245 and €110,406.85 respectively.
The sentence comes after an extensive collaboration between the Dutch Police, the Public Prosecution Service, Dutch TV providers and Irdeto, to see the arrest of seven suspects for card sharing. The suspects offered control word sharing equipment and illegal pirate subscriptions for sale and following further investigation, it was revealed that the control word sharing networks were also providing unauthorized pirated access to international pay TV channels.
Cable operators UPC and Ziggo, who have since merged, began investigations into several suspects offering control word sharing equipment and illegal pirate subscriptions for sale in 2011. Irdeto helped the cable operators by gathering the necessary evidence to refer the cases to the Dutch police in 2012.
“Convictions such as these clearly reaffirm the seriousness of this criminal conduct and the willingness of the Dutch authorities to work with our industry to tackle the ongoing issue of piracy,” said Mark Mulready, Senior Director, Cyber Services & Investigations at Irdeto.
“Working closely with all parties involved, we welcome yet more successful convictions of pirates. Irdeto has a proven track record when it comes to investigating and shutting down criminal pirate networks around the globe, and continues to support not only content owners like the major studios and sports rights holders but also operators and the local police and other governing bodies, to drive positive results for every case undertaken.
“Control word sharing piracy is one of many major threats posed to pay TV operators, and we will continue to work all necessary parties to gather details of any criminal pirate networks, to help reduce business revenue loss and see justice is served for our customers.”