Federal Court in Florida requires individual operator to pay $600,000 plus attorneys’ fees and issues an injunction prohibiting UlaiTV from publicly performing content that airs on certain IBCAP member channels; UlaiTV has ceased providing service
(DENVER) May 3, 2022 – The International Broadcaster Coalition Against Piracy, Inc. (IBCAP) today announced that the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida entered a Final Judgment for $600,000 against Gaby Fraifer, the individual responsible for operating and selling an Arabic-language infringing streaming service marketed under the name UlaiTV, and two companies he controlled. The Court also entered an injunction prohibiting Fraifer, his companies, their agents and others acting or participating with any of them, from publicly performing in the United States any works that air on certain Arabic-language channels.
After a multi-day trial and prior to the recent award of $600,000 in damages, the Court had entered a memorandum of decision in which it awarded recovery of attorneys’ fees and costs – which are in excess of $700,000 – likely making the total award against Fraifer more than $1.3 million.
The Court found that Fraifer and his companies infringed IBCAP member copyrights in two ways: (1) they operated content delivery networks (CDNs) to transmit IBCAP member content to set-top boxes (STBs) for viewing by end users; and (2) they used encoders to push that protected content onto their CDNs. The Court concluded that there was no question that the defendants acted willfully and improperly.
Since the filing of the lawsuit, the UlaiTV service has ceased providing service and is no longer streaming any video content.
“IBCAP is pleased to see that federal courts will not tolerate copyright infringement and will not only shut down illegal streaming, but will also award statutory damages, attorneys’ fees and costs to those who have been harmed,” said Chris Kuelling, executive director of IBCAP. “This ruling sends a clear message that operators of pirate services will continue to be identified, pursued and held accountable for their illegal actions.”
The case was coordinated and supported by IBCAP and filed by IBCAP member DISH Network L.L.C. A copy of the Final Judgment can be found here. A copy of the Memorandum of Decision can be found here. A copy of the Order entering the permanent injunction can be found here.
International Broadcaster Coalition Against Piracy, Inc. is a coalition of leading international broadcasters and distributors representing more than 160 television channels from Asia, Europe, the Middle East, and South America. IBCAP is the largest anti-piracy organization focused on multicultural content. The non-profit organization proactively monitors and identifies unauthorized video services, collects evidence, and assists with legal actions and criminal investigations against organizations and individuals engaging in pirate activities. IBCAP coordinates with government agencies and law enforcement both in the U.S. and abroad, reports suspected infringers to the appropriate authorities, initiates investigations, and promotes the prosecution of persons or companies who participate in the illegal distribution of its members’ video content. More information is available at www.IBCAP.org. Follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn.
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