Montreal man sentenced in illegal camcording case

Geremi Adam sentenced under Copyright Act and Criminal Code

MONTREAL, March 16 /CNW/ - A provincial court judge today sentenced a Montreal man to serve an additional seven (7) days in jail and to complete one hundred (100) hours of community service for movie piracy.

Geremi Adam, 27, was accused and pleaded guilty to illegally camcording a film, an offence under the Criminal Code, and to illegally reproducing and intending to distribute two films, an offence under the Copyright Act. Adam is the first Canadian to be sentenced to jail time for illegal camcording.

Adam has been in custody since January 12, 2010 awaiting today's sentencing ruling and was credited for double time served to date.

Adam, who, according to the RCMP, had been identified by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) as one of the leading movie pirates, faces strict conditions of probation. Adam will be prohibited from entering a movie theatre anywhere in Canada for two years, and from possessing any recording device outside his home or at his place of work. He is also required to forfeit the equipment used in the commission of the offence.

The judgement was issued today in a Provincial Court in Montreal by Madam Justice Coupal.

"We are pleased that the court proceedings acknowledged the seriousness of the offence and the negative impact of Mr. Adam's actions," said Patrick Roy, President and Chief Executive Officer of Alliance Vivafilm, and Vice- Chairman of the Canadian Association of Film Distributors & Exporters. "Film theft costs jobs and affects thousands of Canadians who make their livelihoods in the movie business or in related industries."

In June 2007, the Federal Government amended the Criminal Code, making it a criminal offence to record a film in a movie theatre. "Piracy hurts consumers, legitimate community retailers, local movie theatres, and destroys jobs for all of the people, trades, and businesses dependent on the film industry in Canada," said Ellis Jacob, President and Chief Executive Officer, Cineplex Entertainment. "We joined producers, distributors, studios, theatres and other industry partners to advocate for anti-camcording legislation, and we hope that today's judgement will provide a further deterrent to would-be criminals that illegally recording a movie in a theatre can result in jail time."

    
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Illegal Camcording

Camcording in a movie theatre represents the most significant threat facing film industries worldwide. More than 90 percent of newly released movies that end up on the Internet or in street markets around the world can be sourced to a single illegally camcorded movie from a theatre. Camcorded movies are often directly associated with so-called "release groups" who distribute illegal copies of movies, computer games and software over the Internet. A camcorded copy of a film can be used to produce unlimited numbers of DVDs, shipped around the world for distribution, and loaded onto the Internet triggering an avalanche of illegal downloads. Replication and distribution of illegal DVDs is highly lucrative and in many cases criminal networks use pirated DVD sales to support other kinds of criminal activity.

About Film Theft

Film theft and the trade of other counterfeit goods kill jobs and negatively impact the entertainment industry and related businesses, including a myriad of small business owners and employees working in movie theatres, retail sales, manufacturing, tourism, broadcasting, film festivals and service industries. As film theft increasingly becomes the province of sophisticated multi-national organizations with world-wide operations, international co-operation and support is needed now more than ever to protect the creative contributions of the film industry that enrich our cultures and grow our economies.

About Alliance Films

Alliance Films is a leading distributor of motion pictures in Canada, with motion picture distribution operations in the United Kingdom and Spain. The Company distributes filmed entertainment to theatres, on DVD, online and to television broadcasters. Alliance Films holds the Canadian distribution rights to the productions of leading independent studios, including CBS Films, Focus Features, The Weinstein Company, Overture Films, Apparition, The Film Department, A Bigger Boat, Grosvenor Park and Relativity Media.

About Cineplex Entertainment

As the largest motion picture exhibitor in Canada, Cineplex Entertainment LP owns, leases or has a joint-venture interest in 130 theatres with 1,338 screens serving approximately 70 million guests annually. Headquartered in Toronto, Canada, Cineplex Entertainment operates theatres from British Columbia to Quebec and is the largest exhibitor of digital, 3D and IMAX projection technologies in the country. Proudly Canadian and with a workforce of approximately 10,000 employees, the company operates the following top tier brands: Cineplex Odeon, Galaxy, Famous Players, Colossus, Coliseum, SilverCity, Cinema City and Scotiabank Theatres. The units of Cineplex Galaxy Income Fund, which owns approximately 99.6% of Cineplex Entertainment LP, are traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange (symbol CGX.UN).

About the Motion Picture Theatre Associations of Canada (MPTAC)

The Motion Picture Theatre Associations of Canada (MPTAC) is a national non-profit association representing theatre owners across the country. Headquartered in Toronto, Ontario, the Association's goal is to forward and promote the welfare of theatre exhibition in Canada.

About the Canadian Association of Film Distributors and Exporters (CAFDE)

CAFDE is a non-profit trade association that represents the interests of Canadian owned and controlled feature film distributors and exporters. Its members include Alliance Films, Equinoxe Films, Maple Pictures, Métropole Films, Mongrel Media, E 1 Films/Seville Pictures, TVA Films, Video Service Corp., Kinosmith and Morningstar Entertainment. CAFDE members distribute over 90% of the Canadian and non-studio films released theatrically in Canada each year. In addition, CAFDE members distribute international films of all genres and budgets in Canada and also sell Canadian films around the world.

About the Canadian Motion Picture Distributors Association (CMPDA)

The Canadian Motion Picture Distributors Association (CMPDA) serves as the voice and advocate of the major international distributors of movies, home entertainment and television programming in Canada. The CMPDA carries out investigations, provides support during criminal and civil litigation, and helps educate film lovers on the negative effects of piracy. CMPDA members include Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures, Paramount Pictures Corporation, Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc., Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation, Universal City Studios LLLP and Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. For more information on the CMPDA, please visit www.cmpda.ca.

Disponible en français.

SOURCE CANADIAN MOTION PICTURE DISTRIBUTORS ASSOCIATION

For further information: For further information: Geneviève Côté, Coordinator, Press Relations, Alliance Vivafilm, (514) 963-5565

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CANADIAN MOTION PICTURE DISTRIBUTORS ASSOCIATION

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