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Illegal dish dealer fined $25,000

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OTTAWA - The Federal Court of Canada last week ordered a Montreal-based dealer in illegal satellite gear to pay a fine of $25,000.

Canadian television programmers and broadcasting distribution undertakings (BDUs) appeared before the Federal Court last month to enforce a court order obtained in ongoing litigation against black market satellite dealers in Ontario and Quebec. Late last week, Mr. Justice Blais ordered Montreal's Intracommar Inc. to pay a $25,000 fine and reimburse legal costs incurred by the Canadian programmers and BDUs involved in the litigation on a solicitor-client basis.

"This decision sends a very strong signal to black market dealers that their activities will not be tolerated by a court of law," said Michael Hennessy, acting Canadian Cable Television Association president, "particularly when the dealer had previously agreed to stop these types of activities."

"This decisive and unequivocal result helps protect Canadian and U.S. content creators who otherwise would not receive royalties from the programs stolen from satellites," said Glenn O'Farrell, Canadian Association of Broadcasters president and CEO.

The court also found that DirecTV cannot be legally received and decoded in Canada, nor can access cards be legally reprogrammed.
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