OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES ATTORNEY
WESTERN DISTRICT OF MISSOURI
MATT J. WHITWORTH
Contact Don Ledford, Public Affairs ● (816) 426-4220 ● 400 East Ninth Street, Room 5510 ● Kansas City, MO 64106
OCTOBER 7, 2009
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
TWO MEN PLEAD GUILTY TO TRAFFICKING
IN COUNTERFEIT DVDS, CDS
KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Matt J. Whitworth, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced that two men pleaded guilty in federal court today, in separate and unrelated cases, to trafficking in thousands of counterfeit DVDs and CDs worth nearly $120,000.
* Robert L. Henderson, 42, of Grandview, Mo., pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Fernando J. Gaitan this morning to criminal copyright infringement. Henderson admitted that he used a video camera to record “The Dark Knight” on July 18, 2008, at East Glenn Movie Theater in Lee’s Summit, Mo.
Henderson was apprehended as part of an investigation by the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA). MPAA investigators discovered a digital copy of the movie “Hancock” that was made available for people to download from the Internet. The Internet video was identified as having been recorded in the East Glenn theater. MPAA investigators were sent to the Lee’s Summit theater to investigate and do surveillance during the weekend of the release of “The Dark Knight.” Henderson was seen entering the movie theater carrying a winter coat, which seemed suspicious in July, then appeared to be operating a video camera hidden underneath the coat during the movie. Investigators confronted Henderson, seized his video camera and called the police. Henderson’s camera also contained a recording of “Hell Boy 2” and a partial recording of “The Chronicles of Narnia – Prince Caspian.”
While executing a search warrant at Henderson’s residence, police detectives discovered numerous counterfeit DVDs and several computers. A total of 1,240 counterfeit DVDs were recovered from Henderson, representing a total loss to the MPAA of $24,738.
By pleading guilty today, Henderson also agreed to forfeit to the government a digital video camcorder, two laptop computers, four desktop computers, the counterfeit DVDs and numerous blank DVDs and empty DVD cases.
* Stephen Garrett, 35, of Kansas City, Mo., pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Scott O. Wright this morning to criminal copyright infringement.
In May and June 2006, Garrett sold counterfeit DVDs to a cooperating informant in controlled buys that were conducted during a police investigation. Garrett encouraged the informant to re-sell the DVDs at a profit.
A total of 4,162 counterfeit DVDs were recovered from Garrett, representing a total loss to the MPAA of $83,031. A total of 869 counterfeit CDs were recovered from Garett, representing a total loss to the Recording Industry Association of America, Inc., of $11,053.
By pleading guilty today, Garrett also agreed to forfeit to the government a digital video camcorder, two desktop computers, a laptop computer, two DVD burners, two X-box 360 and two X-box video game consoles, five printers, two scanners, two portable DVD players, a router, several hundred blank DVDs, and $1,200, as well as the counterfeit DVDs and CDs.
Under federal statutes, Henderson and Garrett are each subject to a sentence of up to five years in federal prison without parole, plus a fine up to $250,000 and an order of restitution. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the United States Probation Office.
These cases are being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Matthew P. Wolesky. They were investigated by the Lee’s Summit, Mo., Police Department, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, with assistance from the Motion Picture Association of America, Inc., and the Recording Industry Association of America, Inc.
This news release, as well as additional information about the office of the United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, is available on-line at