The district court of Verden has imposed a one-year prison sentence on parole on a 53-year old man from Leese in Lower Saxony because of the illegal distribution of access to pay-TV platform Sky Deutschland through the internet.
The court basically confirmed the first instance decision of the local court in Stolzenau from 2013. The verdict marks the first sentence of a higher instance in Germany so far regarding this type of IT and communication crime (cybercrime) and can thus be regarded as a landmark for similar cases in future, according to Sky Deutschland.
The pirate had illegally distributed Sky offerings via the internet by running a so-called card-sharing server and selling access to it. He was convicted of computer fraud in conjunction with exposing data and circumventing technical protection measures. Based on the results of joint investigation of the case by Sky and Nagravision, the manufacturer of one of the security systems used by Sky at the time of the offence, the district attorney of Verden initiated prosecution proceedings and subsequently filed suit. Both Sky and Nagravision were joint plaintiffs at the trial. The sentence is not yet final.
“For the first time, a court has made such a decisive decision in second instance,” said Andreas Rudloff, vice president platform services & security at Sky Deutschland. “This is a clear signal to all criminals who seek to enrich themselves at the cost of our company and our honest customers by selling our exclusive content: Card-sharing is not a petty crime, but rather computer fraud that will be prosecuted by the authorities and can be punished with a prison sentence. The close cooperation of the affected companies – in this case the intense cooperation with Nagravision – during the pre-investigation in the shadow markets as well as the consequent investigative works of the prosecution authorities show that determined, joint operations lead to success.”