Mexican piracy syndicate busted

MUMBAI: Mexican Federal Police agents and more than 150 officers from Mexico City’s Secretary of Public Security this week dismantled the entire “Escarmeno syndicate,” one of the largest pirate DVD distribution networks operating in the Tepito district of Mexico City.

Acting on leads resulting from a year-long Motion Picture Association (MPA) investigation, police seized 145,000 pirate discs, including a large quantity of Warner Bros’ mega-hit 300, 184 optical disc burners, and a million package liners, totaling 25 tons of material, says a release. Of the seven individuals arrested at the 20 warehouses and two clandestine copying facilities, five belonged to the syndicate and two were owners of the locations where it carried out its activities.

“This is the first time that an MPA investigation in Mexico has led to the dismantling of an entire organized crime network,” according to Márcio Gonçalves, Latin American Regional Anti-Piracy Director. “We congratulate the precedent-setting move by local police to hold owners of the locations responsible for the illegal activities carried out by their occupants. This is certain to have a positive impact on future enforcement operations.”