The alleged founder of largest file sharing site Kickass Torrents was arrested in Poland on Wednesday.
30-year-old Artem Vaulin is being charged with conspiracy to commit money laundering, conspiracy to commit criminal copyright infringement and two counts of criminal copyright infringement. The criminal complaint charge was filed in US District Court, Chicago.
Speaking on the case, Federal Prosecutor Zachary T. Fardon said
“Copyright infringement exacts a large toll, a very human one, on the artists and businesses whose livelihood hinges on their creative inventions.”
The US Government is working on getting Vaulin extradited from Poland says CNN Money. He is accused of providing an avenue for individuals to download pirated files worth $1 billion. A federal court in Chicago has also ordered the seizure of all Kickass Torrents’ domain names. And there are quite a few of them as they had to change domain names every now and then to stay ahead of legal issues.
As downloading from Kickass Torrents was free, a few individuals considered it more of a hobby than a business venture. But US Immigration and Customs Enforcement special agent Jared Der-Yeghiayan states that although Kickass Torrents download was free, the website raked in about $17 million yearly in advertisement.
The American government seems very intent on its war on piracy as a couple months back, illegal music downloading site Mp3kull was also shut down.
No doubt the bust will break a lot of hearts as fans and avid users of the website have already begun to murmur about the unavailability of the website. They may not murmur for long as this report states that the site is back up. Maybe it’s a matter of finding the new domain name.