THIBODAUX MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO VIOLATION OF DIGITAL MILLENNIUM COPYRIGHT ACT
RENO JEAN DARET, IV, age 28, of Thibodaux, Louisiana, pled guilty today before U.S. District Judge Kurt Engelhardt to a violation of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, announced U. S. Attorney Jim Letten.
According to court documents, DARET operated a business called “Console Solutions” and advertised the modification of XBOX 360 video game consoles along with the sale of “back up” copies of video games. The term “back up” is commonly used by internet gamers to refer to pirated software. Furthermore, the terms “modification,” “mod,” or “modding” are commonly used by internet gamers to refer to the illegal circumvention of copyright features on video game consoles to allow pirated software to play.
In November 2009, undercover agents of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Investigations Office (HSI) contacted DARET to have a XBOX 360 video game console modified and to purchase some pirated video games. Special Agents, acting in an undercover capacity, met with DARET, and paid to have a XBOX 360 modified. Special Agents also purchased a pirated copy of a XBOX 360 video game.
In December 2009, a search warrant was executed on the residence of DARET. During the search, numerous XBOX 360 consoles were seized along with various computer related items used for modifying XBOX consoles and pirating video games.
Speaking on today’s guilty plea, Raymond R. Parmer, Jr., Special Agent-in-Charge of the Homeland Security Investigations Office (HSI) in New Orleans stated:
“The creation, smuggling and sale of counterfeit goods is not
a victimless crime. Products that are produced and sold
illegally do harm to trademark holders, may be smuggled
into the country and distributed by organized crime groups
and then sold to the detriment of local businesses and
communities who derive no financial gain from the illegal sales.
HSI is committed to an aggressive approach towards enforcing
the nation’s Intellectual Property Rights laws.”
DARET faces a maximum term of imprisonment of 5 years, a fine of $500,000.00 and 1 year of supervised release following any term of imprisonment. DARET is scheduled to be sentenced on November 17, 2011.
The case was investigated by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Immigration and Customs Enforcement and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney G. Dall Kammer.
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