UK man who illegally streamed Premier League football hit with hefty fine

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A football fan in the UK has been ordered to pay £16,000 (THB700,000) after illegally streaming Sky Sports online.

Yusuf Mohammed, was ordered by a court to pay the damages to media giant Sky along with being forced to pay back all the money he earned from the scheme and pass on his clients’ details.

Mr Mohammed is said to run a “well-known” illegal streaming site.

The scam came to light after an investigation mounted by the Federation Against Copyright Theft (FACT), which then launched a civil action in the High Court. This follows on from a shop owner being handed a suspended sentence for selling Kodi boxes with illegal plug-ins installed.

Kieron Sharp, CEO of FACT, told the UK’s Sun newspaper: “This is the latest action taken in the ongoing crackdown on illegal digital piracy.

“It should now be crystal clear to anyone thinking of pirating or watching a pirated stream that this is not a grey area and that it is illegal.

“This should serve as a warning to others – whether it’s a copyright infringing website, a ‘”fully loaded’” streaming device or an illegal stream on social media, it is still piracy and breaking the law.” 

Kodi boxes that are “fully loaded”, in others words, come with illegal plug-ins already installed, are becoming an increasing problem globally and the authorities are doing all they can to clampdown on them and similar services.

Kodi is a free service that streams apps and on-demand services onto your TV. The software, itself is legal but is often used by people to stream content illegally. However, many of the plug-ins the box offers are illegal. 

The news comes after a coalition of some of the world’s largest entertainment organisations and broadcasters announced they have joined forces to tackle illegal streaming online through so called ‘fully loaded Kodi boxes’.

The Kodi boxes, which are referred to as illicit streaming devices (ISDs) within the industry, allow users to stream live sports and TV shows for free. But the content is ripped from the likes of HBO, the Premier League and Astro, among others.

Now the newly formed Coalition Against Piracy (CAP) says it will tackle illegally piracy and is focussing its efforts in Asia, where it claims highly organized transnational crime syndicates are responsible for the sale and distribution of the content through illegal streaming boxes, which are then sold around the world.

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