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The DOJ has convicted five men for running a Netflix clone full of pirated TV shows

The DOJ has convicted five men for running a Netflix clone full of pirated TV shows

Image: TC Sottek / The Verge

After years of pursuing a group of piracy advocates for illegally hosting and streaming thousands of stolen TV shows, the Department of Justice doled out a series of convictions.

On Thursday, the Department of Justice announced that Kristopher Dallmann, Douglas Courson, Felipe Garcia, Jared Jaurequi, and Peter Huber — five men who were responsible for running Netflix knockoff Jetflicks — have been convicted on multiple counts of copyright infringement and money laundering by concealment that could ultimately lead to jail time. The five defendants (along with three other individuals) were first charged back in 2019 when the US government argued that their illegally operated streaming service had led to the loss of millions in revenue for companies including Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu.

For $9.99 a month, Jetflicks gave its subscribers access to just over 180,000 episodes of various television shows that were initially downloaded from a variety of pirating websites and subsequently uploaded to the company’s own servers in Las Vegas. According to prosecutors, Jetflicks was able to rake in millions of dollars with its subscription model, but as issues with payment processors and objections from studios began to trickle in, the company attempted to pivot and pass itself off as an organization focused on aviation media.

“When complaints from copyright holders and problems with payment service providers threatened to topple the illicit multimillion-dollar enterprise, the defendants tried to disguise Jetflicks as an aviation entertainment company,” FBI Washington Field Office assistant director David Sundberg said.

Following their convictions, Dallman is now facing up to 48 years in prison, while the other defendants are looking at five years maximum, but an official sentencing date has yet to be set.

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