NinjaVideo founder pleads to copyright charges

September 23, 2011
A man uses a laptop computer at a wireless cafe. A founder of the NinjaVideo website that offered downloads of current movies and television shows pleaded guilty Friday to criminal copyright violations, officials said.

A founder of the NinjaVideo website that offered downloads of current movies and television shows pleaded guilty Friday to criminal copyright violations, officials said.

Matthew David Howard Smith, 23, of Raleigh, North Carolina, pleaded guilty in Virginia federal court. At sentencing, scheduled for December 16, he faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison for each count, the said.

According to , Smith was a founder of NinjaVideo, which operated from February 2008 until it was shut down by law enforcement in June 2010.

The site enabled millions of visitors to illegally download copies of movies and television programs still playing in theaters, and others that had not yet been released.

Users were not charged but were asked to make donations, which provided them access to private forum boards that contained a wider range of material.

Smith was among four Americans who along with a Greek national were indicted on earlier this month.

Officials said the operators allegedly collected more than $500,000 during the website's two-and-a-half years of operation.

The others charged were Hana Amal Beshara, 29, of New Jersey; Joshua David Evans, 34, of Washington state; Zoi Mertzanis, 36, of Greece; and Jeremy Lynn Andrew, 33, of Oregon.

Explore further: Copyright charges for NinjaVideo operators

Related Stories

Copyright charges for NinjaVideo operators

September 9, 2011

Four Americans and a Greek national have been indicted on conspiracy and copyright infringement charges for alleged involvement with a website, NinjaVideo, which offered illegal downloads of movies and television shows, the ...

SAP to pay $20M to settle criminal charges

September 15, 2011

(AP) -- Business software maker SAP AG on Wednesday said it agreed to pay $20 million to settle criminal charges from the U.S. Department of Justice against a now-defunct subsidiary, TomorrowNow.

Recommended for you

WhatsApp vulnerable to snooping: report

January 13, 2017

The Facebook-owned mobile messaging service WhatsApp is vulnerable to interception, the Guardian newspaper reported on Friday, sparking concern over an app advertised as putting an emphasis on privacy.

US gov't accuses Fiat Chrysler of cheating on emissions

January 12, 2017

The U.S. government accused Fiat Chrysler on Thursday of failing to disclose software in some of its pickups and SUVs with diesel engines that allows them to emit more pollution than allowed under the Clean Air Act.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.