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Student Arrested for Modding Game Consoles for Profit

Student Arrested For Modding Game Consoles For Profit
Some folks online are up in arms over the arrest of geek-supreme Matthew Crippen, a student at California State University at Fullerton. According to the charges, Crippen was illegally modding gaming consoles to play pirated games, and doing so for financial gain.

Modding game consoles is, in fact, a violation of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). Note: Don't post pirated products, unless you want to garner the attention of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement office (ICE) and the Entertainment Software Association (as Crippen did).

Federal prosecutor Mark Krause told KPCC that Crippen had advertised his consoles online. When ICE agents raided Crippen's home in May, they recovered over a dozen modded Xboxes, PlayStations, and Wiis. Robert Schoch, ICE special agent in Los Angeles told NBC Dallas-Fort Worth, "Playing with games in this way is not a game -- it is criminal." Crippen was released on $5,000 bail and faces a maximum of ten years in jail.

After the raid, Crippen was indicted by a federal grand jury on two counts of violating the DMCA, each of which carries a maximum of five years imprisonment. Harsh, but perhaps not the "ridiculous" affront the online community is sobbing about. [From: NBC Dallas-Fort Worth and KPCC]

Tags: crime, digital millennium copyright act, DigitalMillenniumCopyrightAct, dmca, homebrew, matthew crippen, MatthewCrippen, modding, piracy, top

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