After a year-long complex investigation coordinated by Europol, authorities in Hampshire, south east England, Scotland and Ireland have arrested six, suspected of illicitly distributing premium TV channels by using IPTV technology.
Earlier this September, officers from Hampshire County Council’s (HCC) Trading Standards Service and Hampshire Constabulary have carried out a warrant at an address in Bursledon, Hampshire.
At the time, four more arrests were made at different locations in Ireland and the UK. Apart from a man and a woman from Bursledon four more people were detained in Crumlin and Ashbourne (Ireland) and also several actions took place in Scotland. During the house searches, computer equipment and cash was seized and several bank accounts were frozen.
The arrests are the result of a complex investigation, involving a number of law enforcement agencies (Garda National Bureau of Criminal Investigation, Police Scotland, Trading Standards and UK IPO) and private sector partners, such as the Audiovisual Anti-Piracy Alliance (AAPA), Federation Against Copyright Theft (FACT). This international investigation was coordinated from the beginning by Europol who supported with operational meetings, criminal analysis and the deployment of two experts to Dublin.
Sheila Cassells, Executive Director of AAPA and member of Europol’s IPC3 Stakeholder Advisory Group, commented that: “This case demonstrates clearly why it is crucial for the private sector and law enforcement to work together on these complex cases. The AAPA members involved value greatly the commitment of law enforcement to fighting audiovisual piracy and the coordination role undertaken by Europol.”