Police seize illegal media players in The Hague

Police sign
. Photo: Wikimedia/M.Minderhoud

The police seized over 200 illegal media players in The Hague on Friday after copyright watchdog BREIN pressed charges of large-scale copyright infringement against a store in the city. The store sold the media players, which were equipped with pre-installed software that allows the watching of movies and shows from illegal sources, NU.nl reports. 

In April the European Court of Justice ruled that such specialized media players should be illegal to sell due to copyright infringement. Since then, hundreds of sellers were stopped in selling such devices, Tim Kuik of BREIN said to the newspaper.

The Hague seller also promised to stop selling the devices, and took his website offline, but simply continued to sell the media players in his store. BREIN therefore turned to the police. "We found it outrageous", Kuik said to NU.nl. He wants this seller to serve as an example. "If you do this, you could face the police on your doorstep." The foundation also plans to file a civil case against the seller.

According to NU.nl, it is unusual for the police to take action in a copyright infringement case. Usually the copyright owners must take the matter to court themselves. Criminal prosecution is only possible in case of industrial and large-scale violations. 

A spokesperson for The Hague police refused to comment on the case to NU.nl. 

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