Organised crime hooking into DVD piracy

DVD piracy has become the number one source of income for organised crime syndicates according to a report on

According to the Australian Federation Against Copyright Theft, .Australia is now second only to China in the Asia-Pacific region for the number of pirated DVDs seized.

Neil Gann, AFACT director of operations, said DVD piracy was no longer the domain of mums and dads or computer geeks but had fallen into the regime of big business for members of syndicated crime. More than $233 million a year was being stolen from Australia’s film industry.

Gann suggested that the high profit margins involved in DVD piracy were a driving factor in the move away from traditional crime ventures such as the drug trade. The money was then being filtered into other criminal activity.

“We now have the police recognising the involvement of organised crime and we had specific examples of bikie gangs being involved.”

In the latest crackdown, internet providers are working with the authorities and sending automatic warning messages to people who use piracy technologies such as BitTorrent.

The Australian Federal Police’s Intellectual Property crime unit is now following the money trails in the same way it does with drug dealers.