Hong Kong Customs combats provision of infringing karaoke songs by party rooms (with photos)

15 Sep 2022

Hong Kong Customs yesterday (September 14) conducted an enforcement operation codenamed "Magpie" throughout the city to combat illegal activities involving party room operators providing infringing karaoke songs to customers in the course of business. A total of 13 sets of karaoke players used for playing suspected infringing songs, seven sets of game consoles with suspected pirated electronic games and a batch of televisions and audio and video equipment were seized. The total estimated market value is approximately $440,000.

Through intelligence analysis and with the assistance of copyright owners, Customs earlier identified a number of party rooms suspected of possessing and providing infringing karaoke songs to customers in the course of business. Customs officers then took enforcement action yesterday and raided 12 party rooms in Tsuen Wan, Kwai Chung and Lai Chi Kok. The batch of suspected infringing items and relevant equipment were seized.

During the operation, four men and two women aged between 27 and 41 were arrested for being suspected of contravening the Copyright Ordinance. All of them are persons-in-charge of the party rooms. An investigation is ongoing and the six arrested persons have been released on bail pending further investigation. Two of them were also suspected of violating the Prevention and Control of Disease (Requirements and Directions) (Business and Premises) Regulation and have been referred to the Police for follow-up.

Customs reminds business operators to comply with the Copyright Ordinance and to make enquires to copyright owners on matters relating to the use of musical visual recordings in the course of business.

Under the Copyright Ordinance, any person, who without the licence of the copyright owner of copyright work, possesses infringing copies of a copyright work for the purpose of or in the course of any trade or business with a view to its being used by any person commits an offence. The maximum penalty upon conviction is a fine of $50,000 per infringing copy and imprisonment for four years.

Members of the public may report any suspected infringing activities to Customs' 24-hour hotline 2545 6182 or its dedicated crime-reporting email account (crimereport@customs.gov.hk).

Ends/Thursday, September 15, 2022

Previous Page