16 months for Manchester man convicted of counterfeiting DVDs

Steven Healey rented a house to carry out his counterfeit films, music and games enterprise.

The 42-year-old was caught when a gas engineer sent around by the landlord became suspicions and called the authorities.

A raid by Greater Manchester Police, Manchester Council Trading Standards and FACT at the house on Church Road, Wythenshawe, in October, 2007 uncovered thousands of counterfeit discs, two computers and 20 DVD burners.

Investigators from FACT found stacks of blank discs, invoices, orders and postal bags containing copied films, music and games waiting to be sent out.

Two months later, FACT investigators carried out a second raid at Healey’s home on Nettlebarn Road, Benchill, Wythenshawe – and found his operation was still up and running.

3,000 counterfeit discs, two computers, a laptop and another 20 burners were discovered.

In total, 10,000 counterfeit film DVDs, more than 3,075 music CDs, 4,500 games CDs and 2,250 discs containing hardcore pornography were seized.

He was arrested and made no comment during his first interview, but made a full admission when questioned a second time.

Healey, who has previous convictions for counterfeiting games, was jailed for 16 months after he admitted 14 trademark and copyright offences when he appeared at Manchester Crown Court on 16 February.

Judge Andrew Gilbart told Healey: “What you have been doing is exploiting your own ability to copy the work of artists so that they receive no payment for their work while you reap the benefits.

“It’s a fraud from which you deprive income from those who created and distributed films, music and games which they had a right to expect. This was not a hobby or a small operation. It was a well-planned operation. In my judgement, you did this for personal gain, pure and simple.”

The judge said Healey, at a conservative estimate, had made up to £1,600 a week.

To report the manufacture or sale of counterfeit DVDs call the charity CrimeStoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or contact your local Safer Neighbourhoods team.

Categories

Latest News

Arrests News Prosecutions

PSNI seize 50 TV streaming devices in raids

Detectives from Belfast Criminal Investigation Branch investigating organised criminality have carried out 18 searches across Belfast, Derry/Londonderry, Dundonald and Banbridge in conjunction with HMRC and FACT – the UK’s leading intellectual property protection organisation.

News Prosecutions

Bootle Licensee Ordered to Pay Over £15,000 for Illegal Sky Use

A Merseyside licensee has been found guilty of two offences of dishonest reception of a television transmission by showing Sky Sports football matches to customers without a commercial agreement from Sky.

News Partnerships

Illicit streaming devices pose electrical risk to users

A series of product safety tests on popular illicit streaming devices entering the UK have found that 100% fail to meet national electrical safety regulations. The findings are a result of a joint initiative between FACT and Electrical Safety First which examined the electrical safety of a number of devices.

News Prosecutions

Man ordered to pay £16,000 for illegally streaming Sky Sports

On Monday 23 October 2017 a judgment was obtained in the High Court against a Sky customer who had been streaming Sky Sports content illegally online. Mr Yusuf Mohammed, of Bristol, has been ordered to pay legal costs of over £16,000, and to disclose details about the money he made and people he colluded with.  … Continued