Corbin Fisher Wins $990,000 Judgment Against eBay Pirate

SAN DIEGO, Calif.—A Texas man who sold homemade DVDs of pirated content from gay adult studio Corbin Fisher was slapped by a California federal court with a $990,000 consent judgment.

David Trice admitted his part in what Corbin Fisher characterizes as a ring of adult content pirates who sell their wares through eBay. He stipulated to liability for $15,000 in statutory damages for each of 66 videos the studio claims he copied and sold without authorization. In addition, the court permanently enjoined Trice from infringing on Corbin Fisher’s intellectual property rights.

“The court recognized our right to protect the material we produce, and this judgment reflects that,” Corbin Fisher General Counsel Marc Randazza said. “This guy certainly got an education in copyright law. I’d imagine that he is reconsidering whether his little enterprise was a worthwhile pursuit. I hope that this case will stand as a warning to others who are doing the same thing.”

Corbin Fisher sued Trice and several others in federal court after a lengthy investigation into eBay activities brought to the studio’s attention by fans. The co-defendants remain targets of the continuing lawsuit.

“While some satisfaction comes from this judgment, this is by no means the end of this case,” Corbin Fisher Chief Operating Officer Brian Dunlap said. “There are co-defendants identified in our suit who can expect us to pursue them. We are seeking damages from them as aggressively as we did with Mr. Trice, as they are no less liable and their conduct no less illegal.

“We are entitled to protect our copyrights,” he continued. “No matter how a content thief might justify their actions or behavior, as this case proves the law is clearly against them and they expose themselves to substantial liability through their illegal behavior.”

Randazza said Trice acted despite knowledge he was breaking the law.

“Mr. Trice was fully aware his conduct was illegal and not authorized by us, but that did not dissuade him from engaging in it,” Randazza said. “Rather, he went out of his way to attempt to concoct some fancy, elaborate scheme he felt shielded him from the law and liability. We saw through that, and the courts saw through that. That will always be the case.”

Dunlap said Corbin Fisher seeks an even larger sum from another of the defendants.

“Mr. Trice faced a potential liability of $9.9 million, but due to his cooperation and contrition in the case, we agreed to reduce our claim by a factor of 10,” said Dunlap. “[Pittsburgh resident Eric] Brown has been a lot less cooperative, so we don’t plan to take it easy on him.”

Randazza would not say whether the studio expected to collect any of the money.