News and Press Releases

United States Attorney Jenny A. Durkan
Western District of Washington

World IP Day Shines Spotlight On Importance Of Protecting Innovation

Western District of Washington a Leader in IP Enforcement

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 26, 2012

          U.S. Attorney Jenny A. Durkan observed World IP Day by highlighting the importance of protecting the intellectual property developed in Western Washington.  Over the last 12 months the U.S. Attorney’s Office continues to investigate and file charges against defendants who seek to profit by stealing the intellectual property of others. 

          “Intellectual property theft – whether involving counterfeit medicines, network hardware, pirated content or trade secrets -- threatens the foundation of our nation’s economy, can endanger public health and safety and can even undermine our national security,” said U.S. Attorney Jenny A. Durkan.  “Citizens can help us combat IP theft by refusing to purchase ‘knock-offs,’ pirated media or other counterfeit goods that endanger American jobs.”

          In the Western District of Washington two men were charged last fall with criminal copyright infringement for operating websites which sell pirated copies of movies, television shows, software and workout DVDs.  Some of the pirated materials are television shows illegally downloaded from Korean broadcasters.  You can read more about the case here: http://www.justice.gov/usao/waw/press/2011/nov/kim.html

          Last June a Clark County man was sentenced to prison for his long time scheme selling counterfeit Microsoft software. http://www.justice.gov/usao/waw/press/2011/jun/shu.html
Additionally, the U.S. Attorney’s Office works collaboratively with U.S. Department of Justice entities to shut down trafficking websites: http://www.justice.gov/usao/waw/press/2010/nov/cybercrime.html .  We work closely with Customs and Border Protection to prosecute those who use our ports to import counterfeit goods used to defraud U.S. customers. http://www.justice.gov/usao/waw/press/2010/oct/rullan.html

          The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Washington has one of the 25 Computer Hacking & Intellectual Property (CHIP) Units that operate across the country.  In all some 290 prosecutors have been specially trained to prosecute IP crimes.

          U.S. Attorney Durkan chairs a DOJ committee on IP enforcement, and is a member of the DOJ IP Enforcement Task Force created by Attorney General Eric Holder to combat the growing number of domestic and international intellectual property crimes, protect the health and safety of American consumers, and safeguard the nation’s economic security against those who seek to profit illegally from American creativity, innovation and hard work. The IP Task Force seeks to strengthen intellectual property rights protection through heightened criminal and civil enforcement, greater coordination among federal, state and local law enforcement partners, and increased focus on international enforcement efforts, including reinforcing relationships with key foreign partners and U.S. industry leaders.  To learn more about the IP Task Force, go to http://www.justice.gov/dag/iptaskforce/

          For more on the impact of intellectual property crimes explore this link:
http://www.ncpc.org/topics/intellectual-property-theft/ncpcs-intellectual-property-theft-campaign

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