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Licensee fined £15k for Sky Sports piracy

January 9, 2019

Following successful legal action taken by Sky, the Designated Premises Supervisor of The Halfway House, Leeds in the north of England, David Pickering, has agreed to pay £15,000 (€16,660) in settlement after infringing Sky’s copyright by showing Sky Sports programming illegally in his premises. He also provided a binding undertaking to not show Sky copyright material without a valid commercial agreement.

Pickering received a criminal conviction and fine in 2017 after pleading guilty to illegally screening three Sky Sports matches to customers. This civil action follows the conviction and is to recover the subscription fees avoided during the offences. The order prevents Pickering from breaching Sky’s copyright by broadcasting football matches without having the required commercial subscription agreement to show Sky programming. If the order is breached, Pickering could be imprisoned.

“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,” commented George Lawson, head of commercial piracy at Sky.

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