A total of four people who between them ran Prince of Wales in Stafford, the Beaufort Arms in Birmingham and the Pheasant Inn in Wolverhampton were convicted of 64 offences after showing Sky Sports in their pubs without permission.
The prosecution was brought by the intellectual property protection organisation FACT.
Jonathan Hunt was convicted of 19 offences, Robert Stevens was convicted of 19 offences, Mark Jones was convicted of 19 offences in his absence and Carol Keenan pleaded guilty to 7 offences of a television transmission with the intent to avoid payment of the applicable charge.
The offences were in contrary to Section 297(1) of the Copyright Design and Patents Act 1988.
Stephen Gerrard, Prosecuting Manager, FACT, said: “The licensees and company involved in this case have consistently refused to engage with us and ignored numerous warnings and offers of advice sent to them. This clearly demonstrates their conscious decision to offend, over a significant period of time. We were left with no option but to prosecute these individuals and we will continue to prosecute publicans who are fraudulently showing Sky programmes in their premises.“
George Lawson, Head of Commercial Piracy at Sky, added “We take illegal use of our programming very seriously and we remain committed to protecting our legitimate Sky customers who are unfairly losing business due to this illegal activity.”
Sky will visit several hundred pubs during the course of the football season, following up organisations it believes are screening its content illegally.