A US court has convicted a 25 year-old music pirate who now faces a fine of $250,000 and five years in jail.
Barry Gitarts, of Brooklyn, New York, was convicted by a jury in the Eastern District of Virginia of conspiracy to commit criminal copyright infringement.
Court documents reveal that Gitarts was a significant member of internet music piracy group Apocalypse Production Crew (APC) from June 2003 to April 2004.
Using the alias 'Dextro', Gitarts paid for and administered a server in Texas used by APC members to upload and download hundreds of thousands of copies of pirated music, movies, software and video games.
The evidence also showed that Gitarts received payment from the leader of APC.
US attorney Chuck Rosenberg said: "Music piracy is stealing and, unless you want to end up in a federal prison, do not do it."
The case is part of an ongoing federal crackdown against the organised piracy groups responsible for most of the illegal distribution of copyrighted movies, software, games and music on the internet.
To date, there have been 15 criminal convictions of APC members and 56 convictions in Operation FastLink, a huge international enforcement action against organisations involved in the illegal online distribution of copyrighted material.
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