Audiomaxxx finally SHUT DOWN

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By: Jaide

audiomaxxx-1.jpgAn alleged music counterfeiting operation based in Winnipeg, Canada, was raided this week by RCMP, who arrested Raj Singh Ramgotra and three others.

The four had criminal charges filed against them by the RCMP for allegedly manufacturing pirated CDs and hard core pornographic videos and distributing them throughout Canada, the US, Europe and Jamaica. Their offerings more recently included pirated digital downloads.

The lead person behind Audiomaxxx, Ramgotra, his associates and their shady ways have been under investigation by the Canadian Recording Industry Association (CRIA) for a year now, following many complaints from artists, music associations and labels around the world. Of greatest concern was the defiance with which Audiomaxxx responded to each request by rights holders to cease the illegal pirating activity.

Reported as "highly developed," the Audiomaxxx operation contained a significant catalogue of allegedly pirated CDs and music downloads for sale through their website www.audiomaxxx.com and tracks from famous artists like: Shania Twain, Lionel Ritchie, Jay-Z, Mary J. Blige and Nelly Furtado were among those being pirated.

Piracy hurts the independent and new artists in a big way as well, and this was underscored by Graham Henderson, President of the Canadian Recording Industry Association who said, "The harm done by music piracy is especially troubling when it undermines a promising artist's burgeoning career. We will continue to work with police and lawmakers to give these artists, and the organizations behind them, the opportunity to succeed."

Henderson thanked the more than 10 officers involved in the shakedown operation, stating, "We sincerely thank the RCMP officers who have worked so hard to bring Audiomaxxx to heel, and to the federal prosecutors who have worked closely with them. Today's arrests send out a clear message that commercial piracy will no longer be tolerated in Canada."

Police seized a significant volume of counterfeit goods at Audiomaxxx, including: more than 200,000 music CDs and DVDs, numerous movie DVDs and hundreds of thousands of blank discs. Police also seized five CD/DVD burning towers, each with 12 burners, which together are capable of burning well in excess of 10,000 CDs and DVDs a day. The raid also netted several computers and hard drives, two commercial CD printers, four colour copiers and other office equipment.

Rated as the biggest in 10 years, the seizure at Audiomaxxx topped the one closest in scale that involved confiscating about 10,000 counterfeit music CDs and DVDs; one-twentieth the volume netted yesterday.

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