MPAA: Melbourne’s Caribbean Gardens is a “notorious market” of piracy

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The Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) has singled out Melbourne’s Caribbean Gardens as one of the world’s most notorious physical markets of piracy in its latest submission to Office of the US Trade Representative. And yes, you read that right.

In its submission, acquired by TorrentFreak, the MPAA notes:

Caribbean Gardens and Markets is Australia’s largest undercover market at over 10,000 sqm, operating every Wednesday and Sunday. There are between 10-20 individual market sellers offering counterfeit Region 1 & 2 DVDs, together with other sellers offering burnt DVDs of recently released titles. The total number of sellers, while substantially reduced from mid-2000s, has increased recently due to a lack of enforcement. State and federal police have shown no interest in enforcing the issue despite multiple entreaties from right holders.

Caribbean Gardens was number two in that list, only beaten – for lack of a better word – two markets in Ukraine. Also on that list were markets in China, Brazil, Indonesia, Thailand and Canada. No, seriously. Canada managed to make that list too.

Piracy has been a problem for Caribbean Garden for years – and it is not limited to movies. Counterfeit software, video games, and clothing can also be purchased from the market – despite being against Caribbean Gardens’ terms (which state clearly “the sale of stolen or counterfeit goods is a criminal offence and is prohibited”) and numerous police raids over counterfeit goods sold in the market.

We’ve asked Victoria Police for comment about the MPAA’s claim about they not showing an “interest in enforcing the issue”.

via Gizmodo Australia

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  • SS

    Errm, isn’t the copyright act part of federal law? Wouldn’t that make it a federal issue for the AFP who have to deal with the enforcement of federal law? This job ad for the AFP says that they’re responsible:

    http://www.jobguide.thegoodguides.com.au/occupation/Police-Officer-Australian-Federal-Police

    “Police officers working for the Australian Federal Police (AFP) are responsible for policing federal law in all states and territories …”
    Why ask the Victorian Police to respond to questions about why they aren’t doing something that from what I understand they can’t do anything about without AFP involvement? The AFP should be the driving force behind any enforcement of federal law. State police aren’t responsible for the enforcement of federal law – they have enough to do enforcing Victorian state laws. The only thing I can think of as to why you’d put the question to them instead of the AFP is lazy journalism (and stupidity on the part of the MPAA if they suggested that state police should be responsible for the enforcement of federal law).
    Other federal agencies may be involved. For example customs for goods infringing trademarks or tobacco imported from overseas illegally (the ATO if it was grown in Australia and no duty paid). None of the violated laws are state laws – they all appear to be federal.
    You should be questioning why now as a good journalist – not a hack reprinting a press release? Rights holders are attempting to get new concessions out of the federal government in transfering the cost of enforcing copyright law to someone other than rights holders. What’s in it for them – they’re using pressure to get something for nothing. You should be visiting the place to see for yourself if the complaints are justified or a beatup applying pressure. That would take some effort though.