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ACAPOR proposes to “clog the courts” against piracy

ACAPOR – Association of Audiovisual Commerce, Cultural Works and Entertainment of Portugal presented (as promised) this morning the first thousand criminal complaints to the Attorney General’s Office, in yet another action to combat piracy in Portugal. Each complaint concerns an IP address of users who have illegally shared content online. And they can go to a thousand complaints a week, they warn.

Armed with allusive t-shirts, with messages such as “piracy is illegal” and “1000 complaints per month. Will you continue to risk it?” if the action “which brings together the largest number of criminal complaints, filed simultaneously, in the history of Portuguese Justice”.

The association collected 970 national IP addresses, representing 970 people who were sharing, without consent, films protected by copyright. To these, they attribute the crime of usurpation of rights.

Although ACAPOR represents national video clubs and not copyright, the usurpation of rights is a public crime, so it has the legitimacy to file complaints. However, he does not intend to be an assistant in the proceedings, the association’s president, Nuno Pereira, told TeK, citing reasons such as the costs involved.

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The remaining complaints include 30 IPs of Internet users who “illegally made available and reproduced content and email addresses” from the ACAPOR website, during the “Payback” operation in October. In addition to the “immorality” of sharing private and confidential content, “behavior translates into the practice of a crime of violation of correspondence or telecommunications”, defends the association.

In a statement distributed on the spot, ACAPOR claims that “it did everything to draw attention and alert political power to the very serious situation in the audiovisual market” and to the “mass theft of cultural and entertainment works through the Internet”.

Movement representatives have, in recent times, met with various political parties defending the “need for legislative adaptation” and have even invited the Government party to “decriminalize illegal download / upload, making it a counter-order, since that an administrative authority be created to monitor the violation of the law or adapt the IGAC for that purpose “.

The last suggestion may be in the process of being satisfied, after the Ministry of Culture announced that it was finalizing the creation of a cabinet on this matter. Even so, the association mentions in the statement that the lack of results compels it to resort to the Judiciary, which it classifies as the “only path that the current legislation allows it to take”. The penalty for the crime of usurpation of rights can be up to three years in prison.

The aim is also to “uproot the feeling of impunity in the minds of the Portuguese population in relation to illegal uploads / uploads”, add the promoters of the initiative, who had already carried out actions such as “24 hours to withdraw”.

As of today, a thousand complaints will be filed per month, guarantees ACAPOR, who says that this “will be enough to cause embarrassment in the judicial machine”, but raises the possibility of quadrupling the number of complaints, going to the thousand complaints per week . When this happens, the number of criminal court cases will increase by “about 30 percent”, causing “total court clogging”.

Lisbon is the district with the most illegal sharing

Asked by TeK on how the IP addresses mentioned in the files were obtained, Nuno Pereira did not want to explain how they got to the information, but in an official statement it is stated that “ACAPOR’s work consisted in collecting data that were publicly available, not having , at any time, invading private environments, even if virtual “.

The same document provides some data on the distribution of the IPs of the alleged offenders by district, with the highest concentration occurring in Lisbon (53%), with 531 of the 1,000 complaints submitted. Porto is the second district on the list (which includes 19), but here the number was no more than 124 complaints, for a percentage of 12.4 percent.

In addition to the IP addresses, data such as the date, time and the associated Internet service provider (ISP) were also collected, which will allow the Public Prosecutor’s Office to request the identification of those involved, if it intends to continue the proceedings.

In the ISP division, the majority of IPs belong to PT Group customers, who represent 43.2 percent of total complaints. Following are customers of services Zon (30.8%), Sonaecom (9.4%), Vodafone (8.6%) and CabovisĂŁo (7.4%).

Joana Martins Fernandes

Editor’s Note:The news has been updated with more information.