The Magistrate's Blog (2005-2012)

This blog has migrated to www.magistratesblog.blogspot.co.uk This blog is anonymous, and Bystander's views are his and his alone. Where his views differ from the letter of the law, he will enforce the letter of the law because that is what he has sworn to do. If you think that you can identify a particular case from one of the posts you are wrong. Enough facts are changed to preserve the truth of the tale but to disguise its exact source.

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Location: Near London, United Kingdom

The blog is written by a retired JP, with over 30 years' experience on the Bench.

Friday, December 30, 2005

Dodgy Videos Detected

We have seen an increase in cases of people (often Chinese nationals) arrested for selling pirated DVDs in the street. One vendor can carry hundreds of DVDs in a few carrier bags, and the offences are related to copyright and to the fact that the recordings are unlicensed (i.e. have no classification certificates). These offences are taken seriously, and the theoretical loss to legitimate companies must be very large - and yet.....

I imagine that most punters buy a cheap DVD knowing that the quality might be suspect and would not be in the market for a full-priced copy, however good the recording. So the losses are indeed theoretical for the most part.

I have a friend who argues strongly that this is a victimless crime, but when you look at the trade in detail it involves many (often illegal) immigrants working for some hard, even ruthless people - they are certainly not Robin Hood characters.