MaGE Leader Sentenced to Prison

District Judge Frank D. Whitney has sentenced 27 year old Justin Paul Emch to prison on one felony count of conspiracy to infringe copyright while he was leader of the warez release group 'MaGE'. On top of this he was also fined $5000 and ordered to serve 2 years on supervised release. Emch was indicted as part of Operation Fastlink - a huge undercover investigation carried out by the FBI, the US Department of Justice and Interpol. Emch reportedly worked to supply the group with software that other members of the group cracked and then passed back to Emch for testing. The group had a huge collection of copyright material to which Emch had full access. Another one bites the dust; ten more have surely already replaced him.

News source: TorrentFreak

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42 Comments

Commenting is disabled on this article.

Hopefully this is just the start.

Copyright infringement is a crime. People can and will be held accountable for their actions.

Justifying it in your head doesn't make it legal.

Hopefully this is just the start.

Speeding is a crime. People can and will be held accountable for their actions.
Jaywalking is a crime. People can and will be held accountable for their actions.
Littering is a crime. People can and will be held accountable for their actions.
Putting your garbage out at the curb an hour early is a crime. People can and will be held accountable for their actions.

Justifying it in your head doesn't make it legal.

What's your point?

C_Guy said,
Hopefully this is just the start.

Copyright infringement is a crime. People can and will be held accountable for their actions.

Justifying it in your head doesn't make it legal.

ORLY

Laws are generally made to protect people but downloading a series of bytes onto your hard drive doesnt hurt anyone. Also most countries in the world dont have anti piracy laws which is where most "copyirght infringment" is conducted. What gives other countries the right to arrest citizens from another country based on their own coutnry's laws? More so why are our tax dollars going to something so expensive and useless when they could for example catch drug smugglers or mafia members?

black_death said,
Laws are generally made to protect people but downloading a series of bytes onto your hard drive doesnt hurt anyone. Also most countries in the world dont have anti piracy laws which is where most "copyirght infringment" is conducted. What gives other countries the right to arrest citizens from another country based on their own coutnry's laws? More so why are our tax dollars going to something so expensive and useless when they could for example catch drug smugglers or mafia members?

I think you made a pretty big jump by declaring that downloading a series of bytes onto your harddrive doesn't hurt anyone.

This is such BS. FACT IS, a company can't lose money that they never had in the first place. Just because some idiot made certain laws in life, doesn't make it right. So if they make a law telling you to jump off a bridge, I assume you would.

Then of course, we have the companies who make the overpriced software, who ARE stealing actual money from us in overpriced software. Yet people like you never say anything bad about them.

TC17 said,
Then of course, we have the companies who make the overpriced software, who ARE stealing actual money from us in overpriced software. Yet people like you never say anything bad about them.

They're not stealing money from anyone - no-one is forcing you to buy their software.

C_Guy said,
Hopefully this is just the start.

_____________________ is a crime.

People can and will be held accountable for their actions.

Justifying it in your head doesn't make it legal.


loonylaws

1.It is illegal to slurp soup in New Jersey. . People can and will be held accountable for their actions.

2.In Blythe, California, a person must own two cows in order to legally wear cowboy boots in public. . People can and will be held accountable for their actions.

3.It is Texas law It is illegal to take more than three sips of beer at a time while standing. . People can and will be held accountable for their actions.

4.FLORIDA Women may be fined for falling asleep under a hair dryer, as can the salon owner. . People can and will be held accountable for their actions.

5.From an AP bulletin: The New York City Transit Authority has ruled that women can ride the city subways topless. New York law dictates that if a man can be somewhere without a shirt, a woman gets the same right. The decision came after arrests of women testing the ordinance on the subways. A transit police spokesman said they would comply with the new rule, but "if they were violating any other rules, like sitting on a subway bench topless smoking a cigarette, then we would take action." Smoking is not allowed in the subways. . People can and will be held accountable for their actions.

6.New Hampshire law forbids you to tap your feet, nod your head, or in any way keep time to the music in a tavern, restaurant, or cafe. . People can and will be held accountable for their actions.

7.WASHINGTON All lollipops are banned. People can and will be held accountable for their actions.

8.In the quiet town of Connorsville, Wisconsin, it's illegal for a man to shoot off a gun when his female partner has an orgasm. . People can and will be held accountable for their actions.

9.A state law in Illinois mandates that all bachelors should be called master, not mister, when addressed by their female counterparts. People can and will be held accountable for their actions.


10.In Michigan a woman isn't allowed to cut her own hair without her husband's permission. . People can and will be held accountable for their actions.


11.In Norfolk, Virginia, a woman can't go out without wearing a corset. (There was a civil-service job- for men only- called a corset inspector.) . People can and will be held accountable for their actions.

I can go on and on but u get my point.

I can honestly say if it was not for warez I would not have the job I have today, I would not have purchased the software I have.

Too bad there's no way to pay for a game based on the amount of time you actually play it. Like... per chapter maybe. That way, if you get 2 levels in to a game and decide it sucks, you only pay $5.... but if you wanna go and finish all ten chapters, then you get hit with the $25 or $50 price tag. Seems like that would ensure they put more effort into quality games, and allow part-timers (playing an hour a week) and broke people (like me) to enjoy a game without wasting a ton of cash.

Any thoughts?

The people who don't pay for software/games/music/movies are never going to pay for them. People that have the money and respect the creations/creators always have and always will continue to buy things. Those that have no money to buy, or do not care about the art, are never going to pay money for them anyway, so putting someone in jail for it is pointless. A fine and/or community service should fit the crime.

Only those that are making a PROFIT from the illegal selling of copyrighted material should serve time in prison.

That's a lie. If it was impossible for games to be pirated, than many people would buy it. Especially when it comes to games like BioShock that only offer single player experiences, people will download it, beat it, and then they have no incentive to buy it.

Just because not every person who downloads would have bought, doesn't mean they all wouldn't have. And if they don't want to buy it, they don't deserve to play it. If person A is willing to pay, but person B isn't, then only person A she be able to play, otherwise, he's just going to pirate it instead. You don't buy a game to support a company, you buy a game to play it.

Its all part of the game
You do the crime and get caught
You do the time
Its not like he had no clue it was illegal
The old saying you get what you pay for... dont allways work that way
You pay nothing might get a lot in comparison

But the sick thing is
He gets a year, 5k fine and 2 yrs prob
Yet found guilty of rape or child abuse and some of he judges let them off easy in comparison to some of the piracy charges and such.

Well I guess that the FBI, Interpol and the US Deparment of Justice have finally done with all those other minor crimes like murderers, child molestors, drug dealers, multimillion scammers and other various mob bosses that they can focus on what really matters...

Wonder how much money the tax payer spent on that operation.

Because everyone knows that the EXACT same people that are in charge of cybercrime are the ones in charge of murderers. And people losing millions of dollars because somebody is stealing their work doesn't constitute a crime at all. Especially not one worthy of police forces' actions.

Skyfrog said,
Right, because they can only focus on one crime at a time. :rolleyes:

Yet our streets are still filled with murderers, rapists, and drug dealers. Starting expensive projects to arrest one minor person in a gigantic network of free software distribution who will get replaced very quickly anyways would be like invading a country while youre still at war with another one and not getting anywhere then planning on invading a third one, oh wait.

I don't know if this guy was profiting himself, but a close friend is part of a release group and they do make significant money from allow people to access their servers and they get a cut from a server farm.

Warez isnt for profit, all the release groups work completely for free, working for nothing more than respect or a feeling of accomplishment. Hell some of them even pay for expensive dedicated servers with fast connections out of their own pockets to release their stuff.

RiVaLSSJ said,
I highly doubt none of them make profit.

As in China and Russia. They do it for profit in that they resell the stuff.

RiVaLSSJ said,

I highly doubt none of them make profit.

The ones that make profit are the individuals who download it and sell it on the street. And some websites and forums were you download it have adsense or something but thats it, no ones payng them to crack software and upload it onto 100mbit servers.

This is just like putting pot smokers in jail. Meaningless to the big picture, but it makes it look like they're actually doing something when in fact they are doing nothing.

Slimy said,
What should be done then?

How about:

  1. Lower prices (and increase overall revenue) (it worked for Reagan w/taxes)
  2. Modify copyright restrictions to sane levels
  3. Properly educate people on copyright
  4. Prosecute people who continue to infringe with rational punishments

Or were you asking about pot?

Joe USer said,

How about:

  1. Lower prices (and increase overall revenue) (it worked for Reagan w/taxes)
  2. Modify copyright restrictions to sane levels
  3. Properly educate people on copyright
  4. Prosecute people who continue to infringe with rational punishments
Or were you asking about pot?

1. No matter how much you lower the price, it still can't beat free.
2. Agreement here. Copyright laws have not been updated enough to be relevant in an high tech world.
3. Yeah, that is important and all, but it is on the burden of the people to find out the laws. It is not the responsibility of copyright holders to educate people about how not to violate copyright. Copyright law is just like any other law in that ignorance of the law is not a defense.
4. This sentence is pretty reasonable. One year in jail, $5,000 fine and 2 years probation. I thought it was pretty light.

Slimy said,
What should be done then?

Make the games free, and let the users decide what to pay. Like radioheads recently released album (Which has made them a shed-load of cash)

Vice said,

Make the games free, and let the users decide what to pay. Like radioheads recently released album (Which has made them a shed-load of cash)


That only works because it's they're the first people to do it. If they did this to games, nobody's going to pay anywhere near the 50$ they are getting now.

Joe USer said,
How about:
[list=1]
[*]Lower prices (and increase overall revenue) (it worked for Reagan w/taxes)

Reagan created a $4 trillion national debt in only 8 years when it had taken America 80 years beforehand to get it up to $1 trillion. Not a good example. The only one's to truly benefit were the top 1% of the rich.... The same scam is happening now with Bush with the same disastrous results.

Foub said,
Reagan created a $4 trillion national debt in only 8 years when it had taken America 80 years beforehand to get it up to $1 trillion. Not a good example. The only one's to truly benefit were the top 1% of the rich.... The same scam is happening now with Bush with the same disastrous results.

I was only talking about the tax plan, not the spending plans. The concept was that if you lower the tax rates people will not cheat as much and your tax revenue will go up. Mixed results.

Joe USer said,
I was only talking about the tax plan, not the spending plans. The concept was that if you lower the tax rates people will not cheat as much and your tax revenue will go up. Mixed results.

Too bad that was a complete failure as well. Many don't realize that tax cuts cost to pay for. The money has to be taken from somewhere. They actually believe that they're getting their money back. Reagan's "Trickled Down On" scam didn't work because many of the rich that he gave money buy back to already paid little to no income taxes as it was. His entire policy wasn't labeled "VooDoo Economics" for nothing. Bush is copying Reagan's policies and so far he has expanded the national debt to $10 trillion.

BTW, during the 80 years it took to get the debt up to $1 trillion there was at least 2 world wars and a great depression.....

Many Americans complain that the Democrats are "Tax and Spend", but for nearly 30 years the "Dine and Dash" policies of the Republicans has caused America to go into the highest amount of debt that it has ever been in its entire history. Under Clinton he had started to pay down the debt and even created a surplus. Maybe its time that some rethink their priorities...

Foub said,
Too bad that was a complete failure as well. Many don't realize that tax cuts cost to pay for. The money has to be taken from somewhere. They actually believe that they're getting their money back. Reagan's "Trickled Down On" scam didn't work because many of the rich that he gave money buy back to already paid little to no income taxes as it was. His entire policy wasn't labeled "VooDoo Economics" for nothing. Bush is copying Reagan's policies and so far he has expanded the national debt to $10 trillion.

Well, I did say mixed results. I'm no Reagan fan, but he did eventually (at least partially) end the stagflation and recession during the early 80's. Either way, he had a good idea and followed through on it.

Joe USer said,
Well, I did say mixed results. I'm no Reagan fan, but he did eventually (at least partially) end the stagflation and recession during the early 80's. Either way, he had a good idea and followed through on it.

It still was a failure for the majority of Americans and has lead to much of the problems now as well. You don't solve problems like that by creating a bigger one even if it was delayed a bit. Namely turning a $1 Trillion debt into a $4 Trillion debt and later into a $10 Trillion debt since Bush is copying everything that Reagan did. It was Clinton who had turned things around for a while and Bush squandered it. Democrats think of the future. The only concern the Republicans had for the future is that their grandkids would be paying for their feeding at the trough.

Foub said,

It still was a failure for the majority of Americans and has lead to much of the problems now as well. You don't solve problems like that by creating a bigger one even if it was delayed a bit. Namely turning a $1 Trillion debt into a $4 Trillion debt and later into a $10 Trillion debt since Bush is copying everything that Reagan did. It was Clinton who had turned things around for a while and Bush squandered it. Democrats think of the future. The only concern the Republicans had for the future is that their grandkids would be paying for their feeding at the trough.

This is a tech site. This is not political news. I have many examples of how democrats are also ****-bricks.... but this is not the place to talk about such things.

/Ron Paul 08