British Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit Makes First Arrest
The British Police intellectual property crime unit (PIPCU), which launched on Friday, carried out its first raids and arrested two men. The unit is being run by the City of London and has a budget of £2.56m over two years. Detectives arrested two men in the city of Birmingham and seized counterfeit copies of DVDs of shows such as Game of Thrones, CSI and Vampire Diaries worth approximately £40,000. According to City of London police commissioner Adrian Leppard by “[l]aunching PIPCU we are making a statement of intent and sending out a clear warning to organised crime that the UK has just become a more hostile place for those who seek to make criminal capital on the back of others’ honest endeavours.” There is little doubt that intellectual property theft is a serious problem that causes serious monetary losses but are arrests the best way to counter it? It seems unlikely that the effort will have long-term consequences. PICPU will also focus on online piracy.