From Publishers Weekly:

An international alliance of publishers and publishing associations has succeeded in getting a Munich court to serve cease and desist orders to the operators of two Web sites that have been illegally offering more than 400,000 copyrighted books for free. The operators, currently based in Galway, Ireland, are estimated to have earned over $10 million annually from advertising sales, donations and premium subscriptions.

According to the Association of American Publishers, the investigation took over seven months to complete and spanned seven countries. A total of 17 publishing companies filed requests for injunctions involving 170 titles. The Landgericht, a regional Munich court hearing the case, issued its order in December, but was only able to serve the injunctions on the operators of the Web and on Tuesday.

AAP president Tom Allen said the case is “a clear example of the complexities in dealing with international Web sites.” Not only was it difficult to find the identities of the operators of the sites, but the top level domain names led as far as Italy and the Pacific island of Niue. Servers were also moved from Germany to the Ukraine. The legal action was coordinated by the Börsenverein des Deutschen Buchhandels, the International Publishers Association and the law firm Lausen Rechtsanwälte. “It’s very difficult to find solutions to piracy when [pirates] hide their identities and jurisdiction is in question,” said Maria Danzilo, legal director at Wiley Global Education (a division of John Wiley, which is one of seven AAP members who participated in the action).

More in the article.


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