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Judge uses ‘Star Trek’ knowledge to smack down ‘porn-trolling’ attorneys

By Arturo Garcia
Tuesday, May 7, 2013 15:21 EDT
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'Happy African-American judge' via Shutterstock
 
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A Califorina District Judge flexed an apparently extensive knowledge of the Star Trek franchise in a decision against what he called a “porn trolling collective” of attorneys who exploited copyright laws to pursue lawsuits against people they accused of illegally downloading adult videos online.

Salon reported on Tuesday that Judge Otis D. Wright II’s May 6 ruling against a group of lawyers connected to Prenda Law found that though the attorneys “boldly [probed] the outskirts of law, the only enterprise they resemble is RICO.

The attorneys, working thru holding companies, Wright wrote, monitored BitTorrent activity of selected adult films and then subpoenaed internet service providers for information on accounts found to be downloading them. The firm then sent cease-and-desist letters to subscribers offering to settle the matter out of court for $4,000 apiece.

“Plaintiffs did not conduct a sufficient investigation to determine whether that person actually downloaded enough data (or even anything at all) to produce a viewable video,” Wright wrote. The attorneys also did not verify whether the IP addresses involved actually belonged to the subscriber or were spoofed before filing their orders, banking on being able to shame people into paying, rather than face a court hearing.

“The federal agency eleven decks up is familiar with their prime directive,” Wright wrote of the attorneys involved, and will gladly refit them for their next voyage.”

Read Wright’s decision in full below.

Decision against Prenda Law and associated attorneys by aboynamedart

[Image via Shutterstock]

Arturo Garcia
Arturo Garcia
Arturo R. García is the managing editor at Racialicious.com. He is based in San Diego, California and has written for both print and broadcast media, including contributions to GlobalComment.com, The Root and Comment Is Free. Follow him on Twitter at @ABoyNamedArt
 
 
 
 
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