U.S. Attorney for Hawaii Ed Kubo, announced today that on March 19, 2007, Federal District Judge Susan Oki Mollway sentenced Don Perreira, age 27, of Pearl City, to four months imprisonment to be followed by four months of home confinement with electronic monitoring and three years of supervised release following his plea of guilty to two counts of copyright infringement.
According to the indictment and court documents filed in connection with the case, Perreira was charged with possessing and distributing illegally modified Microsoft X-Box game consoles containing pre-installed unauthorized copyrighted game software.
Microsoft X-Box users normally first purchase a Microsoft X-Box game console and then purchase or rent game software separately. The modified Microsoft X-Box game consoles possessed and distributed by Perreira contained hundreds of pre-installed games as well as feature length movies, music videos, and pictures. The modified game consoles could also emulate other game platforms such as Nintendo and Atari.
Earlier, in 2006, John Oroyan, age 40, of Waialua, pled guilty to one count of copyright infringement and on July 31, 2006, was sentenced by Judge Mollway to five years probation, three months of home detention, and 300 hours of community service.
Perreira and Oroyan faced a maximum penalty of five years in jail and a $250,000 fine. After their arrests, both Defendants cooperated with the FBI's Cyber Squad.
The Entertainment Software Association (ESA) is a trade association in Washington D.C., who represents many of the victims of the pirated game software and provided technical assistance for the investigation. According to Rick Hirsch, Senior Vice President of Intellectual Property Enforcement at ESA, “We are pleased with the outstanding efforts of U.S. law enforcement agents and prosecutors in bringing these defendants to justice."
According to U.S. Attorney Kubo, "Copyright infringement cases involving the distribution of unauthorized copies of games, music, and movies is a federal crime, and anyone who commits these offenses is stealing the product from its owner. This is not “fun and games.” We will continue to prosecute these crimes because it is considered to be a theft."
The cases were investigated by the FBI Cyber Crimes Squad, and they were prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Tracy Hino.