Scott R. McCausland, 24, of Erie, Pennsylvania is one of three persons convicted of copyright infringement using a BitTorrent network. He faces up to five years in prison and a possible fine of up to $250,000 U.S. He had been using the Elite Torrents network which the FBI raided and shut down on May 25, 2005. McCausland had seeded the Elite Torrents nework with Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith more than six hours before it was released in theatres. It was subsequently downloaded more than 10,000 times before the network was shut down. He will be sentenced on December 12.
The press is calling this the “first” BitTorrent conviction. Perhaps this is the first North American conviction, but I reported back on October 5, 2005 that a Hong Kong man was convicted of copyright infringement while using BitTorrent. That, is the earliest BitTorrent conviction I am aware of.
- Another BitTorrent User Conviction (September 12, 2006)
- First BitTorrent User Convicted (October 5, 2005)