Paul J. McNulty, the United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia announced that Kishan Singh, 33, of Lanham, Maryland, pled guilty today before the Honorable T.S, Ell is, III, United States District Judge, to a single count Information charging him with criminal copyright infringement. Singh, who will be sentenced by Judge Ellis on January 7, 2005, could receive a maximum sentence of five years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine.
Kishan Singh operated a pay-for-access website through which he offered Internet users pirated copies of business software, where the copyright protections had been stripped or circumvented. The total value of the pirated software on Singh's computer was over $79,000. Among the pirated software titles available were programs produced by Adobe, Autodesk, Macromedia and Microsoft. As part of the plea agreement, the United States and Singh agreed that Singh illegally reproduced and distributed copyrighted software valued at between $70,000 and $120,000 during a span of 6 months in 2003.
This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Washington Field Office. Scott J. Stein, Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia and Clement J. McGovern, Trial Attorney, U.S. Department of Justice, Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section are prosecuting the case on behalf of the government.