AICO and Calvista Win Record Judgment From Digital Sinema

SYDNEY — Australia's Adult Industry Copyright Organisation (AICO) announced Tuesday that its founding company, Calvista Australia has been awarded $1.41 million in damages from Jim Karakikes and his company Digital Sinema by the Federal Magistrates Court of Australia.

The damages stem from Digital Sinema's unauthorized use of Calvista's customer mailing list for distributing catalogues advertising pirated DVDs. The court awarded Calvista $914,061.79 for profits made by Digital Sinema from the distribution of the catalogues, which comes on top of judgments already levied against the company of $500 in compensatory damages and $500,000 in punitive damages for copyright breaches.

In order to build their case against Digital Sinema, AICO's lawyers subpoenaed its bank accounts, credit card transactions and telephone records.

"This new record shows that not only does AICO continue to vigorously prosecute film pirates, but that Courts have no hesitation in severely punishing intellectual property thieves," stated AICO executive officer Graeme Dunne. "We will not hesitate to actively use the powers of subpoena, compelling banks and financial institutions to provide the monetary records of respondents for the calculation of damages."

Calvista general manager Hui Newnham offered, "Jim Karakikes and the Digital Sinema case was particularly egregious for Calvista. Not only was he pirating our movies, but he used a ripped-off copy of our mailing list to advertise them. Fortunately, the Courts saw straight through his lies and have now dealt a hefty punishment for his crimes."

Added Dunne, "This case truly cements AICO's track record of winning cases and obtaining ever increasing awards for damages. The message must now be crystal clear that anyone found dealing in counterfeit material faces financial ruin when caught."