Cache of Chipped Consoles, Pirated Games Seized in Birmingham, UK Raid

UK Trading Standards officials announced that they have seized 250 Xbox 360s and hard drives and 450 copied Xbox games from an apartment in the city of Birmingham. The haul, which was taken in a raid last week, has an estimated street value of £500,000, according to officials.

Law enforcement had been monitoring a website related to the raid that offered chipped consoles. A tip from the public started the investigation, although the details surrounding that part of the story were not disclosed further. West Midlands Police and the Association of UK Interactive Entertainment (UKIE), which represents the video game industry in the UK, took part in the operation.

"Birmingham Trading Standards has unveiled what industry experts have called one of the largest-ever seizures of illegally ‘chipped’ or ‘flashed’ games consoles ever discovered in the UK, with an estimated street value of more than £500,000," said a Council representative.

"While some may think ‘chipping’ or ‘flashing’ is a victimless crime, the truth is that such activity directly supports the black market in counterfeit games, which in turn endangers legitimate jobs and businesses in Birmingham," added Councilor Neil Eustace.

Source: BBC

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  1. 0
    Grif says:

    "Hmmm… Do I want to pay a full $60 for this game, or do I want the game for free? Hell, free is good, right? I’ll take it for free."

    Sounds like a lost sale to me.

    I fail to see the benefit of modifying a console to play all the free games you want. Except, of course, playing all the free games you want. What you seem to be advocating is theft, pure and simple. And don’t get me started on the piracy =/= theft crap either. It’s all a bunch of crap covered in more crap covered in cowards hiding behind the constitution because they found a neat loophole that makes theft legal.

    I’m all for modifying for the sake of innovation, but when that innovation takes food off of MY table, you’re damn right I’m gonna find a way to stop it.

    There’s a right way and a wrong way. Modding a system for homebrew purposes? Right way. Modding a system to play all the free games you want? Wrong way. People want to make their own games? That’s fine. But when people are deliberately stealing because they don’t want to pay for something, or stick it to the "evil, corrupt corporation", they fail to realize that the only ones they’re sticking it to are the innocent development teams that spend 60-hour weeks and countless all-nighters in order to make a game in the hope that they can feed their families.

    Have a heart, don’t be a pirate.


    "Power means nothing without honor and pride." My video game review site.

    Atlanta Video Games Examiner for

  2. 0
    greevar says:

    "While some may think ‘chipping’ or ‘flashing’ is a victimless crime, the truth is that such activity directly supports the black market in counterfeit games, which in turn endangers legitimate jobs and businesses in Birmingham,"

    Bullshit. It’s not a crime. That’s a completely baseless assumption to support another equally baseless assumption. Everyone has the right to do what they will to the things that they buy. As much as the US government, my government, wishes to impose our law upon the rest of the world, it still remains that you can do damn well what you like to your property so long as it does no harm. What harm does modifying a console to play unauthorized software do? Who does it hurt? Lost potential sales and jobs? Where’s the evidence? Infringing copies does not equate to a lost sale. You can’t claim with certainty that the absence of that illegal copy, a purchase would have been made. It’s complete lunacy to claim damages for what you never had. I’d like to demand recompense for my potential Ferrari Italia 458! Modding enables many useful and good things, but we can just piss all over that fact because it also enables people to invalidate an old, outdated, and abusive business models, which puts potential profits at risk. Never before have I heard someone claim a loss on something they never had to begin with.

    How much technology would we have today if everytime someone found something they dislike about a new peice of technology and was allowed to ban it based only that? We wouldn’t have very damn much. Let’s ban hair dryers because they threaten the potential profits of towel makers! Let’s ban cars because they make horses obsolete! Let’s ban the internet because it takes control over information from the corporate media outlets and puts it into the hands of the public! Those damn bastards have a lot of nerve freely sharing information that we previously had the power to sell to them by forcing them to view advertising. It’s a crime to take something that exists and find a way to make it do more? From where I stand that’s innovation, not criminal activity.


  3. 0
    Neeneko says:

    This is a good example of why the laws against chipping are unnessary.

    Piracy itself is still illegal, and they still would have had an arrest here without the mods.

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