Florida Couple Nabbed for Software Piracy

A Spring Hill, Florida couple have been accused of pirating video games, and have been arrested by Hernando County Sheriffs. The couple, 25-year-old Javian-Jamal Moore and his wife, 27-year-old Lakeria Monique Moore, were both charged with organized fraud. Javian-Jamal Moore is being held at the Hernando County Jail on a $5,000 bond. His wife was released on her own recognizance so she could care for their children. Police were led to the couple by an anonymous tip.

The anonymous caller said that a craigslist ad was offering modding for a Nintendo video game system (we assume Wii) that would allow the user to install pirated software. The couple was apparently charging $195 for this "service." Detectives contacted Nintendo and the Electronic Software Association (ESA) about the allegations, who in turn asked the sheriff’s office to prosecute the couple for their crimes.

Detectives said the value for the software was right around $33,000.

Source: Tampa Bay Online

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  1. 0
    Left4Dead says:

    Not only is it easier to mod games, it is apparently a whole lot easier to develop official modding interfaces for games so end-users can make legitimate mods.  The PC is, overall, the superior platform.

    I disagree with the video card statement.  Every couple of years now, it seems that a new slot type is required, which means a new motherboard, new CPU, new RAM, and possibly a new power supply.  BUT the upgrade difference is negligible anyway since developers are only targeting the lowest common denominator:  The console and casual gamers.  I can run all the games I’ve got at max resolution with the only exception being Crysis.  I figure I won’t NEED to upgrade for several more years.

    – Left4Dead

    Why are zombies always eating brains? I want to see zombies that eat toes for a living. Undead-related pun intended.

    -- Left4Dead --

  2. 0
    Overcast says:

    They can control the consoles, but this is why I don’t bother to buy one. It’s far easier to mod games on a PC. I’m not talking pirated games, just mods in general for stuff I’ve purchased.

    Consoles are far too restrictive. I’d prefer a more narrow selection of PC games to be honest. I can mod something like Fallout and double it’s playability. I know the consoles have a little of that, but no where near the extent a PC does. Plus, in many cases I don’t even need the disk to play and can keep them in perfect shape. I’m just picky like that.

    So.. yeah.. keep the consoles Sony/Nintendo/M$ – I’ll keep my cash.. The PC, cost wise isn’t a lot more considering what all it can do, plus often a simple video card upgrade for 100-300 bux can really pump up performance anyway.

  3. 0
    Emberwake says:

    While I appreciate your concern for the wellbeing of publishers, I don’t believe you have a cogent legal argument here, Grif. The rights of individuals supercede all but the most direct legal imperitives whenever the two are in conflict. Therefore it stands that a necessity for protection against piracy does not justify such action.

    Now, I suspect this whole debate is academic. I’m willing to assume that the local authorities may have done a little research and gathered evidence that the couple was pirating games and not just chipping consoles. Then I assume they used that evidence to obtain a warrant and used it to search the couple’s home, wherupon their suspicions were validated and they took the couple into custody. The article is brief, and so I think people are jumping to conclusions based on the lack of information provided.

    However, chipping consoles by itself is NOT illegal. It may or may not be a violation of copyright, and the owners of that copyright may or may not have a valid civil complaint against anyone who chips their console. And, as much as we tend to infer that anyone who goes to the trouble of cracking or chipping a console does so for the express purpose of using pirated software, that does not make them criminals either, anymore than owning two VCRs makes you guilty of pirating movies. If owning a system capable of running pirated software were a crime, we’d all be in jail right now for using PCs.


  4. 0
    jedidethfreak says:

    No, Zippy doesn’t.  He believes that if the pirates aren’t making any money of the piracy, then the IP holders don’t get shit, no matter how much money they lose.

    With the first link, the chain is forged.

  5. 0
    Grif says:

    I’ve said this before, and so far, nobody’s been able to answer me. But if you can come up with a way for developers and publishers to guarantee protection from copyright infringement while at the same time keeping it legal to mod systems, I’d be glad to hear it. And I’m sure the rest of the gaming community would, too.

    Until the answer is found, then it remains that developers and publishers have more of a right to protect their IPs than people have a right to mod systems.

    "Power means nothing without honor and pride."

    http://grifsgamereviews.blogspot.com My video game review site.

  6. 0
    hellfire7885 says:

    I myself, and I’m sure Zippy understands too that developers have every right to protect their IP, just, not many agree with their scorched earth approach.

  7. 0
    Grif says:

    Zippy, that’s just naive. Developers and publishers lose millions of dollars every year to piracy, and you say it’s "not enough"? Well then, how much IS enough? Does it have to get to the point where developers and publishers close their doors and hundreds, if not thousands, of people lose their jobs because someone doesn’t want to pay for their games? While I agree the DMCA wasn’t the best solution, it has become a necessary evil, because more and more people are getting into piracy, while fewer and fewer people are modding their systems for perfectly legal purposes. Until people can learn to use mods responsibly again like they did back in the 80’s and mid 90’s, there really is no other alternative.

    Also, I think the word you were looking for is "faux".

    "Power means nothing without honor and pride."

    http://grifsgamereviews.blogspot.com My video game review site.

  8. 0
    ZippyDSMlee says:

    Right just like hate speech material , violent video games or rape themed hentai games they just have to be violent they have no rights, lets not think or question lets just make it illegal and be done with it. You can not lump things together to worse of for us all. The old standard of copy circumvention allowed those who wanted to express their freedoms to be able to back up and run extra code on their systems. The rights of the few were trampled on because the even fewer could threaten government to lobby for a new abusive law.

    Criminalization of the public rights and freedoms are never a good thing, sure throw those who are selling under the jail house but some things should simply can not be illegal because of fou morals(pot, most anti software piracy loons) or fou logic (mod chips).
    Not enough people pirate to do damage to IP owners, even less mod their consoles for such activities and these days with the online nature of consoles you have even less as many people doing it so there is no good reason for the criminalization of mod chips.

    I have a dream, break the chains of copy right oppression! http://zippydsmlee.wordpress.com/2010/05/21/cigital-disobedience/

  9. 0
    Afirejar says:

    Frankly, if you assume someone won’t pirate after paying some guy 200$ explicitely to get the means to pirate, you’re being deliberately stupid. People who don’t pirate don’t pay 200$ to be able to pirate either.

  10. 0
    Shahab says:

    Welcome to the world after the DMCA. That horrible piece of legislation has essentially made console modding illegal. It shouldn’t be, but it is.

  11. 0
    Austin from Oregon says:

    From reading the end I assume they found a nice trove of stolen software (which makes sense if they wanted to make more money after they modded your wii). The language in the article is just a little unclear I think.

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