UK student, Richard O’Dwyer will avoid extradition to the US by agreeing to pay compensation for the copyright infringement from his website TV-Shack. He will visit the United States in December to ratify the agreement.
The US Takes Piracy Seriously
O’Dwyer was charged by the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency for pirating TV programs and movies on his website, TV-Shack. The website was seized back in 2010 and a legal battle has ensued until this outcome was reached. The US said that more than $230,000 in revenue from advertising was generated from the website.
O’Dwyer linked to content that was copyrighted and offered the ability for viewers to see stolen movies and pirated TV shows by providing links to other sites. There was no defense that he didn’t know better because he actually promoted the amount of money that could be saved by viewing the movies from his site versus purchasing them.
If O’Dwyer had been extradited to the US for a hearing, he could have faced up to 10 years in prison. Even now, he must avoid breaking copyright laws in the future or he could still face a trial. This is part of the agreement that he is signing.
O’Dwyer is a 24-year old student from Sheffield and has been called “the human face” of the fight between the web content industry and the public by Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales.
The court had approved the extradition in May before O’Dwyer agreed to the compensation. He would have been the first British resident extradited on such a case. His charges were included in a larger seizure for websites involved in illegally distributing copyrighted material. All together seven domains were seized and shut down; many of them operated like TV-Shack as linking websites rather than actually displaying the movies on their sites.
[Image via universitytimes.ie]