net cast for piracy ‘big fish’ to feel the heat
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NEARLY 120 000 pirated discs were confiscated in an anti-piracy partnership with police and several organisations since the beginning of this year.
As the fight against piracy gains momentum, those involved in the anti-piracy battle are aiming for the “big fish”, what they believe is an organised syndicate involved in the mass production and distribution of pirated music and film discs.
Speaking in Joburg yesterday, Yusuf Abramjee, chairman of the SA Federation Against Copyright Theft (Safact), commended the SA Police Service on its success, but emphasised the need to to do more to stop piracy.
“Great inroads are being made and the fight continues. Now we must bring the big fish to book. Piracy is sabotage of the highest nature. These people have no respect for the rights of others.”
Abramjee said Gauteng was the hot spot for piracy with at least 103 000 copies from the total number of discs confiscated this year coming from the province.
A total of 181 people were arrested for piracy during this period – 71 of them in Gauteng. Twelve people were convicted of piracy or intellectual theft-related crimes since the beginning of this year while 40 paid fines for similar crimes.
Things heated up in the last quarter of last year when 147 people were arrested nationally, 140 640 pirated discs confiscated and 58 people arrested.
All these are the fruits of an anti-piracy campaign which has often seen the police, various artists and various creative industry organisations take to the streets to confiscate pirated DVDs and CDs worth millions. The discs are then destroyed.
The SAPS and its partners are exhibiting at the Rand Easter Show where a big show is planned for Saturday.
The show will include the police’s medal parade, passing out parade of new recruits, skydiving, various simulations as well as an event for widows and orphans of the officers who died in the line of duty.
Gauteng police boss Major Lieutenant-General Mzwandile Petros said various artists who are partners in the anti-piracy campaign have come on board to support them during their show.
Petros commended SA artists for their continuous support of the police.
Musician and poet Mzwakhe Mbuli, who also paid tribute to the police for their role in the fight against piracy, said about 22 artists have offered to perform for free at the police’s Rand Easter Show display.
“People like Maskandi heavy-weight Thokozani Langa, kwaito artist Bricks, gospel star Solly Moholo and queen of gospel Rebecca Malope as well a jazz maestro Don Laka are among those who will perform.”