PRESS RELEASE - New sentences in Greece for pay TV piracy

09 January 2013

In two new judgments the Three-member Felonies Appellate Court of Athens has found two defendants guilty of piracy offences, involving card sharing, and issued a sentence of 9 years imprisonment to one of the accused.

The defendants were distributing to third party customers via the internet the decoding keys of pay TV programmes from NOVA. Users were then able to view programmes without subscription using illegitimately adapted set top boxes.

Following complaints filed by AAPA (Audiovisual Anti-Piracy Alliance) member, Multichoice Hellas S.A., the Three-member Felonies Appellate Court of Athens, declared the defendants guilty of repeated violation, for their own gain, of laws regarding the protection of intellectual property, and the legal protection of the pay TV services.

The Court, in one case, declared the defendant guilty on all three grounds, imposing a penalty of a 9year prison sentence and a fine of €32,000.

In the second case, the Court found the defendant guilty of violating the legal protection of intellectual property, imposing a 3 year prison sentence and €8,000 fine. The defendant's sentence was suspended in recognition of previous good conduct.

In welcoming the decision of the Greek court AAPA's Executive Director, Sheila Cassells, said that "these are very significant judgments which demonstrate that audiovisual piracy will be treated as a serious felony, resulting in possible imprisonment, and substantial fines, in Greece. Those involved in piracy in Greece and other countries should take note of the seriousness with which courts deal with piracy."

AAPA represents companies involved in the provision of protected audiovisual services, security technology for such services, and the manufacturing of products, which facilitate the delivery of such services. AAPA's mission is to enable the fight against piracy where this involves the development, promotion, distribution, application or use of technologies resulting in the unauthorised use of protected audiovisual content, by co-ordinating intelligence and action supported by effective legislation and its implementation.

For more information about AAPA's work visit

AAPA contact:
Sheila Cassells:
+44 7500 243 136

Media enquiries:
Miranda Rock:
+44 7957 391 498

Notes to editors:
The laws involved are: Law 2121/1993 regarding the protection of intellectual property, 386A on fraud through a computer and PD 343/2002 on the legal protection of pay TV services.