Court charges Kent counterfeiter

A Kent-based counterfeiter has been given a two-year suspended sentence following Trading Standards’ investigations. Lawrence Barratt was found guilty after Trading Standards Officers observed him selling fake DVDs at a car boot sale.

Later, police officers stopped a car driven by Mr Barratt for a routine inspection. Officers found a holdall containing counterfeit DVDs. Inspections of his properties found equipment needed for large-scale copyright abuse, including DVD burners, DVDs, computers and inlay cards.

The Federation Against Copyright Theft passed information to Trading Standards about numerous websites associated with the fraudster that were selling counterfeit DVDs.

Birkett Long's Head of the Commercial Department, David Wisbey, says that the case illustrates how seriously the offence of deliberate copyright infringement is treated by the Courts, because of the impact on the owners of the original works: “People sometimes assume that copying DVDs is a “victimless crime”, but for the owner of the copyright, the loss of income has a major impact on their ability to invest in new products”.

Birkett Long is able to advise copyright owners of any musical, literary or dramatic work on the best ways of protecting their efforts from criminals like Lawrence Barratt.

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