Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION

Media piracy costs city man $550K

  • Print

A Winnipeg music and video "pirate" has admitted to the largest operation of its kind in Canada.

Raj Singh Ramgotra, 36, was arrested in 2008 following an extensive RCMP investigation into Audiomaxxx, which was suspected of selling bootleg copies of music, movies and even pornography on the black market. Officers raided his Pembina Highway business, seizing numerous computers, equipment and elaborate DVD-burning and printing machines.

Ramgotra returned to court today to plead guilty and be sentenced for what the Canadian Recording Industry Association has called "20 times bigger" than anything that had been busted in the country. Audiomaxxx had been in business for several years, building a massive online customer base.

Ramgotra was given a two-year conditional sentence which allows him to remain free in the community. He will also pay $150,000 in fines, which the Crown says is the amount of profit he made over the years. He will also pay $400,000 in in restitution.

At the time of the arrest, CRIA president Graham Henderson called it a victory for the little guy. He said many of the artists being pirated by Audiomaxxx were small Caribbean and reggae musicians that "urged and begged" the CRIA to investigate.

Major artists weren't spared either -- the CRIA said Audiomaxxx was illegally selling music by Shania Twain, Nelly Furtado and Jay Z as well as many other well-known names.

A visit to the Audiomaxxx website showed the company was selling all manner of music and movies for $3.99 to $5.99 each, far below normal retail. The site also offered digital downloading of videos and music.

The police raid netted investigators more than 200,000 CDs, labelled and ready for shipment.

Ramgotra's case has slowly dragged through the legal system, due largely to the massive amount of evidence obtained during the year-long investigation and disclosure required for the defence.

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

O'Shea says the team is going to stick to the plan after first loss

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • PHIL HOSSACK / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS 060710 The full moon rises above the prairie south of Winnipeg Monday evening.
  • An American White Pelican takes flight from the banks of the Red River in Lockport, MB. A group of pelicans is referred to as a ‘pod’ and the American White Pelican is the only pelican species to have a horn on its bill. May 16, 2012. SARAH O. SWENSON / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

Should political leaders be highly visible on the frontlines of flood fights and other natural disasters?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google