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Licensee jailed for Sky Sports infringements

September 24, 2018

By Colin Mann

Following legal action taken by pay-TV operator Sky, the Court of Session in Edinburgh has imposed a punishment of 14 days imprisonment against the former Designated Premises Manager (DPM) of the Clachan Bar in Whitburn, after he was found in contempt of court.

Christopher McGregor Clacher, who was the DPM of the premises at the time, was imprisoned as a result of breaching a permanent interdict which was first granted back in August 2016. The interdict prevented McGregor Clacher from breaching Sky’s copyright by broadcasting football matches without having the requisite commercial subscription agreement which is required to show Sky programming.

Despite the terms of the interdict, which was issued in July 2016, the premises showed two further Sky football matches in February and April 2017. McGregor Clacher did not attend court in August 2018 and as result was found in contempt of his absence.

“This is the first instance in which a breach of interdict and associated contempt of court emanating from the unlawful showing of Sky broadcasts have resulted in a custodial sentence being issued,” noted George Lawson, head of commercial piracy at Sky. “Mr McGregor Clacher was previously found in contempt of court for a previous breach of interdict in August 2016. On that instance he was issued with a court fine which was not paid in full. As a result, the court considered the only suitable punishment for this contempt, was a custodial sentence. This ruling demonstrates the seriousness of this issue. We are committed to visiting thousands of pubs every season to monitor the games they are showing, as well as investigating suppliers to protect Sky customers who are unfairly losing business due to this illegal activity.”

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