By Shane McGinley
Trader is first person in Kingdom to be jailed on piracy charges
A Saudi national who manufactured
and sold more than 100,000 counterfeit goods has become the first person ever to be
imprisoned in the Kingdom on copyright and piracy charges, it was announced on
The convicted pirate’s retail
outlet and warehouse had been raided a total of seven times since 2006,
resulting in the seizure of more than 100,000 counterfeit products and several
pieces of reproduction equipment.
The first six offences
resulted in escalating fines by the Violation Review Committee. Following the
seventh raid in 2010, Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Information recommended the
Board of Grievances deliver a jail sentence.
In a landmark verdict, the Board
of Grievances upheld the Ministry’s recommendation and the individual was jailed for a week.
The conviction has been seen by
the Arabian Anti Piracy Alliance (AAA) as an important step in combating
copyright theft in the kingdom, which currently has a piracy rate of around 60
percent - the highest in the Gulf region.
The AAA estimated that piracy has
cost the Saudi economy around $1bn in the past two years and their recent survey found 67 percent of respondents believed imprisonment of
those involved would help solve the problem.
“The adjudication of this case is
a very important victory for anti-piracy advocates as it is the first-ever
court judgment in KSA resulting in imprisonment. The judgement is a strong
deterrent to prevent such criminal activities from proliferating in the
country, knowing that the Saudi judiciary is prepared to apply the full extent
of the law in trying cases related to piracy,” said Scott Butler, CEO of AAA.
a week in jail. gasp shock.
poor dear. that will really be a deterrent. Seven times since 2006, so probably once a year the cops raid him. For the rest of the year its business as usual. maybe next year he will be "away from station" when they arrive.
more than 100,000 counterfeit products and all he got is a week in jail!!!!!!!