News & Press

image description

AUSTRALIAN POLICE TAKE DOWN OPERATOR OF ILLEGAL MOVIE DVD BURNER LAB

57 Year Old Suspect Charged With Copyright, Firearm And Drug Offences

  • 30May 2011

Singapore/Sydney: On May 27, 2011, Campsie Police Detectives supported by investigators from the Australian Federation Against Copyright Theft (AFACT) conducted a multiple search warrant operation on a vehicle and a residence in Condell Park in Sydney’s western suburbs, and subsequently arrested a man on movie copyright, firearms and drug offences.

The operation followed a lengthy enquiry by investigators from AFACT into a suspected illegal DVD manufacturing racket following information received from a member of the public.

Police seized over 8,500 illegal movie DVDs and 18 DVD burners. Police also discovered four firearms, drugs and almost AU$25,000 (US$26,800) in cash. The 57 year old male was subsequently charged with multiple offences including manufacturing and distributing infringing DVDs, the supply of an indictable quantity of a prohibited drug and possession of unauthorized and unregistered firearms.

Movie titles seized in the police operation included copies of The King’s Speech and Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, and Water for Elephants. The latter two films are currently being screened in Australian cinemas and neither are available yet legitimately on DVD.

Andrew Mackie, Managing Director of Transmission, the Australian distributor of The King’s Speech, said that he was disheartened by the continued theft of movies and television programs, “Transmission is incredibly proud to play a part in bringing this Oscar-winning film to Australian viewers. The success of the film is in part due to the important creative contribution made by Australian actors, producers, distribution and cinema personnel. Movie theft threatens Australia’s screen communities and local businesses and it is important that all movie lovers play a part in preventing it.”

Neil Gane, Executive Director of AFACT said, “This is not the first time we have come across individuals or crime groups using both movie theft and drug trafficking as their preferred illegal fundraising activity. We commend the action taken by the New South Wales police which has resulted in the arrest and eradication of a drug trafficking and movie theft racket.”

“This is an excellent result and we congratulate the Australian police for dealing a significant blow to this criminal operator,” said Mike Ellis, President and Managing Director, Asia-Pacific for the Motion Picture Association (MPA). “This just goes to show that movie theft is a serious crime and a dangerous business that impacts the livelihoods of screen communities across the world. We remain totally committed to supporting the Australian authorities in taking down these criminals”.

Download File (PDF)

For more information, please contact

Stephen Jenner
Australian Screen Association
(61-2) 9997 8011

About the MPA: Promoting & Protecting Screen Communities in Asia Pacific

The Motion Picture Association (MPA) and the Motion Picture Association International (MPA-I) represent the interests of the six international producers and distributors of filmed entertainment. To do so, they promote and protect the intellectual property rights of these companies and conduct public awareness programs to highlight to movie fans around the world the importance of content protection. These activities have helped to transform entire markets benefiting film and television industries in each country including foreign and local filmmakers alike.

The organizations act on behalf of the members of the Motion Picture Association of America, Inc (MPAA) which include; Paramount Pictures Corporation; Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc.; Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation; Universal City Studios LLC; Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures; and Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. The MPA and the MPA-I have worldwide operations which are directed from their head offices in Los Angeles and Washington, D.C. and overseen in the Asia Pacific by a team based in Singapore. For more information about the MPA, please visit www.mpa-i.org.