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UK judge okays extradition of college student for copyright infringement case

Written by Rich Fiscus (Google+) @ 14 Jan 2012 16:31 User comments (24)

UK judge okays extradition of college student for copyright infringement case A UK college student targeted by the US government for alleged criminal copyright infringement lost his initial bid to block extradition to the US.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), a division of the US Department of Homeland Security, wants Richard O'Dwyer extradited for operating a website, called TV Shack, where links pointing to infringing streams and downloads from other websites were documented.

TV Shack was one of the first websites targeted by ICE as part of Operation In Our Sites, under which they have seized numerous domain names. They claim to have that right based on the use of domain names which fall under the authority of US-based Verisign.

Even though several of the domain names seized have been connected to individuals outside the US, so far O'Dwyer is the only person to face extradition in connection with the ICE operation. This is apparently a side effect of changes to the extradition agreement between the US and UK in 2003. Under the new rules, UK judges are not given the opportunity to evaluate or consider US evidence in their decision.

After the ruling was announced, O'Dwyer's mother criticized the treaty, saying she was:

disappointed with this Government for signing us up to this treaty which has openend up the floodgates to America to come and seize British citizens without having set foot out of this country. That extradition law needs fixing fast.


Under UK law there are a number of potential problems with O'Dwyer's extradition. The most obvious is the question of criminality. In order for extradition from the UK to the US to be authorized, the alleged actions must also be criminal in the UK.

In short, that involves two separate questions. The most fundamental is whether links to infringing content are, themselves, infringing. In other words, does providing links equal distribution? Additionally, if linking is distribution under the law, there's a question of whether merely collecting money to operate a website constitutes a business activity.

According to the judge in a 2010 case against a similar website called TV Links, linking is definitively not distribution under UK law. The case was dismissed, on the grounds that the UK implementation of the 2002 EU Electronic Commerce Directive explicitly defines electronic distribution in a way that excludes links to third party websites or services.

Prior to that, in a case involving torrent tracker site OiNK, a jury acquitted site operator Alan Ellis of criminal copyright charges. Rather than distribution, that case revolved around the question of whether collecting donations transformed OiNK into a business. Obviously the jury rejected that claim.

No doubt that was a deciding factor in the subsequent decision to drop criminal charges against FileSoup admins. In that case, prosecutors specifically told the judge it was "neither necessary nor appropriate to continue to pursue the matter in a criminal court."

These three cases are significant to O'Dwyer's extradition. Thanks to the publicly available court orders from the ICE seizure of TVShack.net in 2010, we already know their allegations revolve around linking, not distribution. In fact, ICE specifically states the links on TV Shack point to third parties [read the Full text of order below]:

Betweeen June 17, 2010 and June 24, 2010, ICE agents were able to access the TVShack.net website and link to cyberlockers and stream and/or download illegal copies of movies. In order to stream and/or download illegal copies of movies, the agents clicked on links for the below-listed movies on the TVShack.net website, selected links to stream and/or download the movies from the below-listed cyberlocker sites, and streamed and/or downloaded copies of the selected movies from the relevant cyberlockers in a manner that indicated that the entire movie had been uploaded and made available to users.


The sources of the streams and/or downloads themselves were listed as Zshare.net, DivxDen.com, and NovaMov.com. In other words, none of them were distributed by TV Shack. No distribution means no copyright infringement per the ruling in the TV Links case. All the same, he finds himself facing extradition.

His fight is not over yet. He plans to appeal the decision, which will apparently have to wait until the extradition order is approved by the Home Secretary.

ICE Domain Name Seizures, December 8, 2010

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24 user comments

114.1.2012 16:59

We're all living in Amerika, Amerika, it's wunderbar!
We're all living in Amerika, Amerika, Amerika!
We're all living in Amerika, Coca-Cola, sometimes War!
We're all living in Amerika, Amerika, Amerika!

214.1.2012 17:21

^^^lol^^^

Me wonders if it goes both ways,somethn' tells me they'd quote the constitution & not be extradited.

Since previous prosecutions linking to other websites failed what's the point of all this


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314.1.2012 18:43

R.I.P. FREEDOM: 1776-2001

414.1.2012 19:22

It's going to happen just because your in another country still doesn't mean you can do what ever you like.

514.1.2012 19:42

If he was committing a real crime like murder then I'd understand.

All he was doing was hosting a website...

615.1.2012 2:36

i dont agree 1 bit with extradition.if he lives in england and breaks uk law (in england ) he should be tryed in england.the whole worlds gone stupid.

uk needs to stop fearing american and stand up for itself or at least stand up for its citizens.

stuff it everyone laydown there welcome mats and give america an open invitation to come into any country and abduct its people and lock them up for anything they want its gonna happen soon or later anyway.


custom built gaming pc from early 2010,ps2 with 15 games all original,ps3 500gbs with 5 games all original,yamaha amp and 5.1channel surround sound speakers,46inch sony lcd smart tv.

715.1.2012 3:25

I'm joining the Taliban! Who's with me


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815.1.2012 4:19

Important point is that ALL movies they complain about are screeners. They were still playing in theaters.

915.1.2012 10:13

So lets see if I have this straight:

So congress solution to to help protect IP in hopes of using fear to generate more sales for those IPs, is to waist tax payers $ on the courts pooling in citizens from across the world to US to be tried and possibly sentenced to US jails. While the people they attempt to coax into not pirating/buying will still not buy cause they have no $. AWESOME

They can't even see through their own ignorance that this will just be wasting tax payer $ on something that could have went into say I dunno job creation programs to help increase innovation. Not put it into something that clearly is going to make US economy worse off. Let them pass SOPA the way it was, fuck it, how long before they actually have it in effect before the next US President realizes Obama was a tool and this should be scrapped immediately due to high cost.

1015.1.2012 17:42

We never saw too many greedy thieving bankers facing extradition. The Duchess of York has even had her case swept under the carpet this week. It's a greedy bastards world!!!

1115.1.2012 19:03

Originally posted by Frogfart:
We never saw too many greedy thieving bankers facing extradition. The Duchess of York has even had her case swept under the carpet this week. It's a greedy bastards world!!!
Ahhhhh Excuse me.. It's capitalism, not greed let's get it right please!! We are not greedy here in the U.S... there is nothing wrong with financial advancement at the expense of people who are less eduacated or mis-informed, as they deserve to be taken for a ride if they don't know or learn the system!!

1215.1.2012 19:44

Originally posted by CaptHook:
Originally posted by Frogfart:
We never saw too many greedy thieving bankers facing extradition. The Duchess of York has even had her case swept under the carpet this week. It's a greedy bastards world!!!
Ahhhhh Excuse me.. It's capitalism, not greed let's get it right please!! We are not greedy here in the U.S... there is nothing wrong with financial advancement at the expense of people who are less eduacated or mis-informed, as they deserve to be taken for a ride if they don't know or learn the system!!

lmao

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1316.1.2012 15:29

Originally posted by CaptHook:
Originally posted by Frogfart:
We never saw too many greedy thieving bankers facing extradition. The Duchess of York has even had her case swept under the carpet this week. It's a greedy bastards world!!!
Ahhhhh Excuse me.. It's capitalism, not greed let's get it right please!! We are not greedy here in the U.S... there is nothing wrong with financial advancement at the expense of people who are less eduacated or mis-informed, as they deserve to be taken for a ride if they don't know or learn the system!!

It's not Capitalism. Capitalism is the system. Greed is an emotion & is one that drives another of human nature called desire. Greed therefore perpetuates said system into a bastardization of what it once was & turns it into a parasite that feeds on the very body it needs to survive, thus in sense almost killing its host. Or did you forget the economic bubble bursting here about 4 years ago?

The thought of capitalism does not motivate anyone to modify their behavior for good or bad. Yet, enticing one's greed always elicits a behavioral response; both good and bad. I.e., I will give you capitalism if you behave yourself... Nothing. However, I will give $100K if you do (evil/good)...

If you were right, capitalism would have been just fine in China right now. However, because I'm right (& it's not because I want to be, believe me), Greed has taken over. Don't believe me? Look at the Foxconn story.

If you want to be right, then make sure you are so.

1416.1.2012 16:17

Originally posted by LordRuss:
It's not Capitalism. Capitalism is the system. Greed is an emotion & is one that drives another of human nature called desire. Greed therefore perpetuates said system into a bastardization of what it once was & turns it into a parasite that feeds on the very body it needs to survive, thus in sense almost killing its host. Or did you forget the economic bubble bursting here about 4 years ago?

The thought of capitalism does not motivate anyone to modify their behavior for good or bad. Yet, enticing one's greed always elicits a behavioral response; both good and bad. I.e., I will give you capitalism if you behave yourself... Nothing. However, I will give $100K if you do (evil/good)...

If you were right, capitalism would have been just fine in China right now. However, because I'm right (& it's not because I want to be, believe me), Greed has taken over. Don't believe me? Look at the Foxconn story.

If you want to be right, then make sure you are so.
Well said L. Russ, but like so many others, you are speaking from a position of reason.

Unfortunately for you and I, the administrators of this system we live under do not see the issue in such a reasonable light. Sure greed is an emotion, we all know this, but comments like the one's you've just posted would most certainly get you labeled a socialist.. especially in most of today's conservative circles!

Greed/Capitalism go hand-in-hand under the current system, there is no distinction. Calling it "greed" to justify economic in-equality would just be termed as an attack on capitalism or have you not been paying attention to the current GOP field and their philosophy. We all know the causes of the economic collapse, but only the strong survive!!

In short, the rules are as follows... If you are not strong enough to survive in today's economic climate, then you deserve what you get. Evidence of this idiology has manifest itself throughout the U.S. and around the world..... HENCE Greece/Occupy Wallstreet protest movements!

VERY OFF-TOPIC, but interesting debate none-the-less!
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 17 Jan 2012 @ 0:12

1517.1.2012 12:19

Originally posted by CaptHook:
Well said L. Russ, but like so many others, you are speaking from a position of reason. .....

VERY OFF-TOPIC, but interesting debate none-the-less!
Thank you for your entire quotation. And to think I was labeled as a (taking artistic license here) know it all & blow hard elsewhere.

Too bad it took some harsh travels & realities in the military to teach me the world.
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 17 Jan 2012 @ 12:20

1617.1.2012 16:40

Unbelievable...on both parts...ICE and the UK government.

ICE is the abomination spawned by the Patriot act (who'da thunk consolidating every US investigative department into one big ball of responsibility would backfire?).

This doesn't absolve Obama of not stepping in and stopping this crap. I don't, however, see Mr. Pro-business Romney doing anything differently should he be elected. I would see Ron Paul stepping in and putting a stop to this BS.

1717.1.2012 17:12

Originally posted by IguanaC64:
Unbelievable...on both parts...ICE and the UK government.

ICE is the abomination spawned by the Patriot act (who'da thunk consolidating every US investigative department into one big ball of responsibility would backfire?).
I would certainly hope that the Patriot Act wouldn't be used in this case, but if it was then we really are in the s**t.

Really does get one to start wishing for the dead to start rising & take over.

1817.1.2012 18:40

ICE is a department created under and empowered by the Patriot Act. You didn't hear about INS (the department now known as ICE) doing this kind of stuff did you? It wasn't until the Patriot Act that they gained all this power.

http://www.dhs.gov/xnews/releases/press_release_0815.shtm

Straight from the horses' mouth...

We signed away our freedoms in exchange for the illusion of safety.

1918.1.2012 15:47

I certainly didn't vote for the Patriot Act, nor was I or any of the voting public were under the understanding that we were given a choice to be honest, but you're right; slowly, but surely every freedom will be given away under the guise of safety or the illusion of protected freedoms.


2027.3.2012 11:18

Originally posted by AmericaSucks:
[Something that has little to do with anything good or the article at hand & then an apparent slanderous remark toward fatherless, unbaptized, American male children...]
Ahh, another enlightened world traveler with eons of ivy league education & experience to back his profound alliteration that not only leaves us gasping in its torrid mockery of original defiance, but its ability to consistently have us read it time & again. As though it were a Broadway musical beckoning us like the Pied Piper to see it time & time again.

Putz... If you have a problem, state it & then offer a solution. Otherwise you're nothing but a troll, off topic & in violation of Rule #15 of AD forum rules. Grow up. America isn't the only place in the world with idiots.
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 28 Mar 2012 @ 12:39

2127.3.2012 11:18

Originally posted by AmericaSucks:
Originally posted by CaptHook:
Originally posted by Frogfart:
We never saw too many greedy thieving bankers facing extradition. The Duchess of York has even had her case swept under the carpet this week. It's a greedy bastards world!!!
Ahhhhh Excuse me.. It's capitalism, not greed let's get it right please!! We are not greedy here in the U.S... there is nothing wrong with financial advancement at the expense of people who are less eduacated or mis-informed, as they deserve to be taken for a ride if they don't know or learn the system!!




cant you just hear the thunder.intolerance in any form is simply intolerable.
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 27 Mar 2012 @ 17:51

2227.3.2012 12:21

idiot deleted. you guys can edit your posts.

2327.3.2012 17:55

tried to edit all my post.didnt make sense without the previous taliban comment.lol.

2427.3.2012 20:20

Originally posted by LordRuss:
I certainly didn't vote for the Patriot Act, nor was I or any of the voting public were under the understanding that we were given a choice to be honest, but you're right; slowly, but surely every freedom will be given away under the guise of safety or the illusion of protected freedoms.
I think the patriot act opened the door so the feds can intervene with our lives.

Really, it was the doorway for the government to mess with us. I think 9/11 was an inside job. I'm not a conspiracy theorist but something smells like bad food.

The act gave the FBI and such to not have to ask a judge for a warrant or slap a GPS to your car.

Our forefathers are rolling in their graves.

The whole idea was to get away from totalitarian rule. Brits still pay heavy taxes on a part of government which has no say-so in the least bit. Just pomp and circumstance to supply $ for the King and Queen for their extravagant habits..

No King to this day but I'm sure he will have funky ears from inbreeding.

Keep the bloodlines pure Dumbo the Elephant ears. :)

Jeff

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