The Channel logo

News

By | Drew Cullen 7th March 2008 23:17

Brothers caged for selling pirated Adobe software

Cops and Robbersons

An American software internet piracy ring destroyed, and for once eBay is absent from the story. Two middle-aged brothers have been sent to prison for selling "massive amounts" of pirated software from Adobe, Autodesk and Macromedia, at huge discounts.

They sold software over the internet with a retail value of $5.6m for about a mil. Maurice Robberson, 48, was sent down for three years and told by the federal court in Alexandra, Virgina to pay $855,917 restitution - the entire amount he grossed from his flourishing ecommerce business. Thomas Robberson, 55, was sentenced to 30 months and told to pay back $151,488. They have agreed to forfeit the proceeds, presumably to avoid a longer spell in the slammer.

From late 2002 through October 2005, the brothers in crime and DNA separately ran a bunch of websites, with names likeBestvalueshoppe.com, theDealDepot.com, AmericanSoftwareSales.com, CDsalesUSA.com and AmericanSoftwareSales.com.

Two people who worked with Maurice were sentenced in January. They are Danny Ferrer, 39, imprisoned for six years for selling $4m in pirated software with a retail value of nearly $20m. His website was BUYUSA.com. Alton Lee Grooms, 56, who helped set up some of the illegal businesses and made $150,000, was rewarded for singing like a canary to the feds, with a sentence of a year and a day.

DoJ release ®

comment icon Read 13 comments on this article alert Send corrections

Opinion

Memristor_wafer

Chris Mellor

Execution warrant close to being signed for Fink's folly
Woman cuddles 'sly-looking' Fennec fox. Photo by Shutterstock
Cartoon of employee asking wky boss makes hium wear suspenders (while pincer through open trapdoor remains poised above his head) illustration by Cartoon resource for Shutterstock

Frank Jennings

It's not like my boss painstakingly nurtured the contacts, right?

Features

Girl and computer, photo via Shutterstock
Middle-class terror of engineering also part of problem
Nerd fail photo via Shutterstock
Shouting match
Single market vs. rest of the world