Mega-shutdown

by NICHOLAS TARSILLO Staff Writer

   The 13th largest website in the world for file sharing services on the web, MegaUpload, was shut down by the FBI for copyright infringement on Thursday, January 19.    The individuals of MegaUpload were indicted by a grand jury in the Eastern district of Virginia on January 5.    MegaUpload has been charged $175 million in criminal proceeds as bail, causing more than half a billion dollars in harm to copyright owners    “I don’t believe it is entirely correct for the FBI to shut down this company and provide a large punishment. If someone decides to make a website then that is their decision and it may be correct to shut it down, but the owners should not be placed in jail, especially if it’s a popular or well-known website,” says freshman Michael Higgins.    Seven people from the MegaUpload Company were charged with online piracy crimes and four suspects are already in custody, authorities said. Arrested in New Zealand for crimes including conspiracy to commit racketeering and criminal copyright infringement, they currently face up to 55 years in prison    Arrest include market chief Finn Battan of Germany, graphic designer Julius Bencha of Slovakia, head of business development Sven Echternach of Germany, programmer of the website Andrus Nomm of Estonia and Turkey, and the chief technical officer Marthias Ortman of Germany.    The individuals each face a maximum penalty of 20 years in jail for conspiracy to commit racketeering, five years for conspiracy to commit copyright infringement, 20 years for money laundering, and two charges of five years each, for substantive criminal copyright infringement.    “I believe the amount of time spent in jail is completely fair as long as there is absolute proof of copyright infringement.” says Frank Tarsillo, director of Thomson Reuters. “I believe that if this site resides physically and there is absolute proof of a copyright infringement, the U.S, then has the right to be able to shut the site down.”    The U.S has also threatened to delete all user information on Thursday, February 2. Millions of users that have uploaded files on the site may lose all there data, including family photos and personal documents.    “I am undecided at this point because it is wrong to commit a copyright infringement and they do add up but the time in jail is large for the crime.” Says freshman Greg Puc.    There have been suggestions that this event shares a relationship with the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA). However, the U.S already had people investigating possible crimes against MegaUpload before the SOPA bill was even created. Investigators said there is no relationship between arrests in there two year investigation.    Freshman Max Oge said “Although they may have had investigators already searching for crimes against MegaUpload, I do find it convenient that the site was shutdown, exactly when the SOPA idea was created.”

#Copyrightinfringement #FBI #MegaUpload #NickTarsillo

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