UK pay-TV pirate hit with £250k fine
September 14, 2022
By Colin Mann
Michael Hornung, who in June 2022 was jailed in his absence to four and a half years in prison for selling set-top boxes giving illegal access to Sky TV, BT Sport, and Virgin Media, has been ordered to pay more than £250,000 (€288,000) under the Proceeds of Crime Act.
Minshull Street Crown Court in Manchester was told he had fled to Turkish-controlled Northern Cyprus, a territory with which the UK has no extradition treaty. Hornung has been ordered in his absence to pay £258,642.95.
Kieron Sharp, Chief Executive of UK intellectual property protection organisation FACT, said the confiscation order “makes clear the consequences of providing illegal streaming services, a serious criminal offence which in this case has led to a substantial prison sentence and now severe financial penalties. We are pleased the court have recognised the seriousness of piracy-related crime and we thank Greater Manchester Police for their support and assistance during the course of a complex investigation. The money recovered will go back to public bodies, including law enforcement agencies, which assists them in their efforts to bring criminals to justice.”