2010's Big Piracy Busts Netted Probation, Fines, Millions in Seized Games

U.S. video game industry anti-piracy efforts last year led to more than 40 criminal cases and at least two convictions, the Entertainment Software Association reported today.

The rundown of the industry's anti-piracy efforts were reported in the association's 2010 Annual Report released this week. In it, the non-profit outlined law enforcement training sessions it had spearheaded, assistance it had provided to law enforcement in other countries and arrests and convictions.

In the U.S., the association highlighted two convictions, both of accused console modders. One received 10 months of house arrest, followed by two years of probation and a fine of $1,800. The other received a four month house arrest, four years of probation and 50 hours of community service for one count of violating the Digital Millennium Copyright Act while running a console-modding business.

Arrests and raids abroad included a seizure in Brazil of 670,000 pirated games, a raid of a Kuala Lumpur warehouse that netted 700,000 copies of pirated games and a Toronto store owner convicted of selling pirated games out of the Pacific Mall outside of Toronto. In that final case, the store owners entered a guilty pleas and agreed to pay C$16,000 to the ESA to cover court costs and a C$14,000 fine to the court.