Ari Alibhai speaks at the International Computer Hacking and Intellectual Property Programme in Budapest

The week-long event is organised by the US Dept of Justice and US Department of State and will bring together participants from Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Moldova, and Ukraine to discuss investigative and prosecutorial methods related to cybercrime and digital piracy.

Ari Alibhai speaks on day three when digital piracy will be considered in-depth.  Case studies will be provided from the U.S. with presenters from US DOJ’s Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section (CCIPS).  Ari will present on illicit Streaming and the Premier League discussing the Flawless investigation and prosecution.

Ari Alibhai specialises in the private prosecution of criminal intellectual property infringement.  He acts for multinational corporate clients in music, film, sport and broadcast media, including the Premier League, FACT, Sky and BT Sport (now TNT). He is at the forefront of ground-breaking and precedent setting cases, having undertaken almost 100 private prosecutions over a 20 year period, with an increasing focus on broadcast piracy and illicit streaming.

Ari has unique experience building and developing private prosecution systems for rights' holders, brand owners and broadcasters defrauded through piracy, and has done so for many clients including the Premier League, SKY, FACT, The British Recorded Music Industry and Virgin Media Ltd.   Ari has used his experience to train and advise the National Trading Standards Service, the Public Prosecution Service for Northern Ireland and the Crown Prosecution Service in the prosecution of intellectual property crime. For the past ten years Ari has focused on the prosecution of Organised Crime Groups responsible for the operation of large scale Illicit Streaming Services (ISS), the most significant of which concerned the Flawless ISS.

Trading under the names Flawless, Shared VPS and Optimal (also known as Cosmic), the fraudulent pay-tv services in this case generated in excess of £7 million in just five years. The ISS involved more than 50,000 customers and resellers, and 30 employees, one of which was positioned undercover at a specialist anti-piracy company.  The organisations offered illegal access to watch Premier League matches, hundreds of channels from around the world and tens of thousands of on-demand films and TV shows. It is understood to be the world’s largest-ever prosecution of an illegal streaming network and resulted in five people being sentenced in June 2023 to a total of more than thirty years’ imprisonment after being found guilty of conspiracy to defraud, money laundering and contempt of court. The investigation and prosecution undertaken by the Premier League was supported by a number of organisations including the Metropolitan Police, Hammersmith & Fulham Council’s Trading Standards team and the anti-piracy organisation, FACT.

The event forms part of the U.S. Department of Justice Overseas Prosecutorial Development, Assistance and Training programme.

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