Today, many people choose to watch movies on illegal streaming websites. Many others choose to download music illegally online. For these individuals, the threat of criminal consequences is always at the back of their minds somewhere. But if you engage in pirating, how likely is it that you’ll actually be charged with a crime? Pirating laws have changed considerably over the last few years in response to substantial advances in technology. It’s important to understand the newest pirating laws in New York, especially if you are facing charges.

If you have been accused of any crime related to pirated content, you should also get in touch with a qualified, experienced criminal defense attorney in New York as soon as possible. These legal professionals can help you fight for your rights in an effective manner. With their help, you can avoid needless criminal consequences and pursue a positive legal outcome.

New Pirating Laws You Need to Be Aware Of

In 2008, the New York Senate passed the Piracy Protection Act, which introduced the new crime of illegally recording a film or live performance. If you go into a movie theatre and record the screen with a video camera, you could face up to a year in prison and a $1,000 fine. In 2007, a man was caught in the Bronx trying to record a sneak preview of the “Transformers” movie and faced serious charges due to the Piracy Protection Act. In addition, 2020’s Covid Relief Bill included the Protecting Lawful Streaming Act, which punishes those who create illegal streaming websites.

Downloading Content is Always Illegal

When you download content from the internet, you’re always breaking the law. Online piracy is considered a cybercrime, and it falls under copyright infringement laws. In order to be convicted, you must willfully infringe upon copyright laws, and you must do so for financial gain. So downloading a copy for personal use will not be as serious as downloading a copy and then distributing it for profit.

What About Streaming?

In terms of legal consequences, streaming videos from an illegal website is nowhere near as bad as downloading copies of the movie. Streaming has long been considered a “grey area” of the law. Generally speaking, you have to download copies in order to violate copyright laws.

Many have argued that streaming a video is essentially the same as having your friends over for a sleepover and watching a movie together. Only one person has the copy, and they are allowing other people to watch that copy. In truth, the consequences for simply streaming content (and not creating a streaming website) are about the same as an average traffic ticket. However, the fines can become quite expensive in some cases, and it’s worth fighting these fines with the help of an attorney.

Enlist the Help of a Qualified Attorney Today

If you’ve been searching the New York area for a qualified, experienced criminal defense attorney, look no further than Darren DeUrso, Attorney at Law. We have considerable experience with a wide range of criminal cases, and we can fight for your rights in an effective manner. Although pirating laws have changed recently, you still have a strong chance of achieving a favorable legal outcome. Book your consultation today, and we can immediately start developing a defense strategy on your behalf.



Darren DeUrso, Attorney at Law


188 East Post Road, Suite 300

White Plains, NY 10601

Phone: (914) 772-8614

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