Film piracy plot: British man pleads guilty in US

NEW YORK – A British man pleaded guilty on Thursday to a global piracy ring that allegedly spread unreleased movies and TV shows online, causing damage. large for manufacturers.

George Bridi, 52, made his defense of an allegation of conspiracy to piracy during a phone hearing before US District Judge Richard Berman in Manhattan.

He admitted to being “a bit nervous,” but when asked by the judge if he pleaded guilty because he was guilty he answered unequivocally: “Yes, your honor.”

The case stems from Bridi’s work for the Sparks Corporation, which, according to prosecutors, has cost the studios tens of millions of dollars over nearly a decade by leaking movies and TV shows ahead of their projected release dates. ants.

Prosecutors said Sparks obtained prior copies of copyrighted DVD and Blu-Ray discs from wholesale distributors after giving a reason to obtain them.

Prosecutors said Sparks then used the computer to override the disc’s copyright protections, known as “jailbreak” or “ripping,” and encrypt the disks so they could be easily accessed. shared online, prosecutors said.

The indictment said the copied content was labeled “Drone,” “Rovers,” “Geckos” and “Sprinter.”

Bridi, who lives on the Isle of Wight in the UK, was arrested in Cyprus in August 2020 and extradited a year later.

He could face 2.25 to 2.35 years in prison under federal guidelines recommended January 20, 2022, his sentencing.

US prosecutors have also charged two other defendants with the conspiracy.

One defendant, Jonatan Correa, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to piracy and was sentenced to 2-1/4 years of supervised release in May. The other defendant, Umar Ahmad of Norway, was large.


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