AfterDawn: Tech news

Man sentenced to prison for selling copied video games

Written by Andre Yoskowitz (Google+) @ 04 Aug 2007 19:59 User comments (21)

Man sentenced to prison for selling copied video games Timothy Hall was sentenced to two years in prison and a $1200 USD fine yesterday, for pleading guilty to selling unauthorized video games on his website.
He pleaded guilty to one count of criminal copyright infringement in May after he was caught selling thousands of copied games on his website, Hall sold games for the Xbox, GameCube, PlayStation 2, and Wii and also sold TV series on DVD.

For the five year period started in 2001, Hall made more than $266,000 in profits from selling the counterfeit games, and he acknowledged the fact when pleading guilty.

Back in May, undercover FBI agents placed orders for over 70 Xbox games and the 4 full seasons of the hit show "24" and they received every disc as promised.


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21 user comments

15.8.2007 8:04

What u in for? Games....

Gotta make an example out of someone huh. Only has to pay $1200 in fines? That leaves him for than 200k profit and a 5 year vacation, free food. Sounds pretty nice.

25.8.2007 8:07

This should send a strong message to counterfeiters, just like the war on drugs.

35.8.2007 8:09

this brings up the question of what the cops did with the games/dvd's they got. i could just imagine "guess what daddy got from the evidence room for chrismas"

45.8.2007 8:18

Id plead guilty too if I made that much money of of selling games... He probably has money stashed and said f*ck it Ill do 2 years in a federal prision.....

55.8.2007 9:25

Thats not too bad, however I don't think he will be able to keep any of his $266,000. He might though, as I am not sure what they will do in this case.

$53,000/yr. isn't bad just from a probably home-based business of selling copied games. At least he delivered, thats a good thing (until the FBI got involved). :P


65.8.2007 9:45

People sell pirated stuff on eBay all the time, he didn't even need a website.
I bought a movie before just to find out it was a VHS copied onto DVD.
There is a couple who are selling Camcorder quality movies outside of a Superstore in Calgary for $5 each.
But you charge all these people and throw'em in jail, you'll just get twice as many people replacing them. It'll stay like that so long as there's a market for it.

75.8.2007 10:06

Glad the FBI is really working hard
What a freakin joke
Instead of stopping terrorist or other serious matters they place an order for 70 xbox games and the show 24. They should be the ones thrown in jail

85.8.2007 11:39

I bet half those people that bought from him don't even know how to load those games.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 05 Aug 2007 @ 11:58

95.8.2007 11:52

this guy is an idiot. For one, dont sell backups, and if youre stupid enough to sell them dont sell them online. especially if youre making over 250 grand in 5 years. hes lucky if he only gets a few years.

105.8.2007 13:38

THE F.B.I should go after those perverted a$$ senators that molest kids then everybody hush,hush over the subject.this is some bullcrap if you ask me the government goes after who they choose not to long ago the bush brats gave g.w bush a mix cd with there favorite music...w.t.f?and have we heard anything about this ?hell no it was all over msn news 1 day and gone the next .be fair ahole's if one goes to jail then send them all including the rich ..p.s. if this guy was so stupid to sell it over the internet they should give him 5yrs for being a dumb a$$.i bet they where not even looking 4 him just happened to google

backup games
or some shit like that what a retard.yeah let me sell next i will sell dope over the internet! f idiot hope they check his oil in jail

115.8.2007 15:31

I ordered from him once..he always used Princo or Office Depot discs (el cheapo) but amazingly most worked without a hitch. I would imagine most of his customer base was for 56K'ers who couldn't get decent speeds.
He took his site down last year after a bust in CA spooked him but I figured he would have destroyed all the evidence thereafter. Guess he sold just a few more and one in May '06 ended up being a Fed.

125.8.2007 15:50

this guy deserves to be in jail for selling pirated games

135.8.2007 17:39

What i would like to know is why 70 games 1 games would have been all it would have taken to be used in court, cause he was only charged with 1 count yet they have 70 counts of games and 1 count of a tv season which each eps could be classed as a count of piracy so thats over 70 counts of piracy

Im guessing the 69 games he was not charged with where just orders from the boys at the FBI

and lets face it $266,000 is a good part time income from something most pirates do for free

145.8.2007 18:53

boy do i miss his site...over 3/4 of my games came from him...
dont drop the soap bro...

155.8.2007 19:33

I don't think any amount of money is worth 2 years of your life in jail. Personally I think it was stupid selling conterfit if he was making a lot because more chance of getting busted.

166.8.2007 9:21

Blimey, So basically he makes $266,000.

We subtact - 1200 fine and then devide by 7 (5 years operation plus 2 years time) =

$37,828.57 a year profit and for two of them he just sat on his ass.

Dont get me wrong im not condoning the crime but, still even after the fine $40k a year isnt bad, how is it the fine was soooo little there has been people with fewer mp3s downloaded from kazaa that have been fined far far more... ?

pcrazy99, was the message go and do it anyway because if you get caught your going to do two years and get to keep most of the lolly... if not thats the message that coming across.

And just think of the savings whilst he is inside its not as if he can go on any mass spending sprees's.

176.8.2007 10:05

Originally posted by c1c:
What u in for? Games....
lmao, so true. but hey, if i made that kind of profit, as long as the jail sentance wasn't too long, it MAY be worth it... not

186.8.2007 16:10

It may be funny but actually Federal Prision have some of the dumbest criminals... Earlier I said that he prolly has money stashed... and someone said, They would confiscate the money... Yeah if they found it.. If he is smart enough to make that much money off of pirated material than Im sure he was smart enough to put some away. Not all profit making criminals put there money in banks...
THis guy will get fined and will get jail time, but I bet he will get out early for good behavior or becoming a trustee.. I would be scetchy about ordering from him again though. The FBI will probably try getting him to help locate other dealers bc they have nothing better to do than go after people selling copied entertainment.. Its just like having a high paying job that you really hate doing, except he gets out of the stress and aggravation of being somewhere he doesnt like in only 2 Who says crime doesnt pay...
A few years back, when I was installing data modems in cutomers home, I ran across this young black girl. I went into her apartment and it looked like a ghetto video store! She had Copied videos EVERYWHERE! On shelves, in the bathroom, in the kitchen.. She had handwritten sign on the wall that stated " Theater Releases - $7.00 Store Releases - $5.00" . In her Bedroom was a 6 disc copier/burner, No computer..She also gave me a card with her all her address and phone She even sold one to my buddy that was working with me that day. When I got outside I told my buddy, " hell I would have given you whatever movie you want" and then laughed my ass off!
Anyway that was the funniest thing Ive ever seen..

1911.8.2007 14:53

Well here its quite a simple fact u should not sell copyrighted material.

2015.8.2007 12:10

Oh my, when I first put a modchip in my Xbox in 2003, this is the guy I got my burnt games from until I learned how to copy and download them myself. I bought like 50 games from this dude. He sold them for like 3 dollars a disc, and if your order was over like 30 bucks, he shipped them for free. This dude was selling the new releases like two days after they came out, I remember his inventory was always up to date like a mofo, he was the go to guy for real. I always thought this dude was selling the stuff the legit way because he had a bunch of disclaimers on his site saying that he only provided copies of stuff strictly for "backup" purposes and that he was not responsible for what people would use the stuff for, even though he know exactly what they would use it for.

2116.8.2007 1:48

lol you can but a disclaimer on what ever you want, but if not in accordance with the law u might a have well written it on rice paper and eaten it.

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