The UK’s Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit (PIPCU) has arrested a man in the north-western city of Manchester on suspicion of running a series of illegal sports streaming websites
The 27-year-old is believed to be operating streaming sites that allow unlawful access to subscription only TV services which is costing industry more than £10 milllion.
The man was arrested at his home in the North West by the City of London Police’s specialist IP unit where detectives found evidence of what is described as an “industrial size” streaming operation, including 12 computer servers streaming a wide range of sporting events from across the world, which have since been seized and taken away.
The operation was supported by Greater Manchester Police with the suspect being taken to a local police station for questioning.
DCI Danny Medlycott, the newly appointed Head of PIPCU, said that the September 1 operation was the unit’s third arrest in relation to online streaming and sendt out a strong message that we PIPCU was homing in on those who knowingly commit or facilitate online copyright infringement.
“Not only is there a significant loss to industry with this particular operation but it is also unfair that millions of people work hard to be able to afford to pay for their subscription-only TV services when others cheat the system,” he said.
PIPCU is based within the Economic Crime Directorate of the City of London Police, the National Lead Force for Fraud. It is a specialist police unit dedicated to protecting the UK industries that produce legitimate, high quality, physical goods and online and digital content from intellectual property crime.
The operationally independent unit launched in September 2013 and is initially being funded by the Intellectual Property Office (IPO), which is part of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills.