A man was jailed for 12 months at Aylesbury Crown Court on Thursday (June 7) after pleading guilty to counterfeiting computer software estimated to have cost the industry more than £200,000 in lost sales.
Neil John Edmonds, 27, from Emerson Valley, who made and sold counterfeit software on online auction site eBay, had at a previous hearing pleaded guilty to offences under the Trade Marks Act 1994 and the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988.
The investigation by Milton Keynes Trading Standards was started following a complaint from a member of the public, who complained that the Roxio Creator software (video editing software) bought on eBay was counterfeit.
As well as producing and selling software discs, at an earlier hearing the court was told that Edmonds also sold ‘download’ copies of computer software. Edmonds admitted selling almost 3,500 counterfeit software programs.
He had counterfeited 2,980 copies of Roxio Creator programs costing the industry an estimated £178,769, 93 copies of Cyberlink Power DVD costing an estimated £5,578 and 411 copies of Hornby Track Plans & Virtual Railway programs sold (all downloads) at a cost of £16,621 to the industry.
Head of regulatory unit for Milton Keynes Council, Karen Ford, said: “The sentence imposed reflects the seriousness with which the court views those who produce and distribute counterfeit goods.
“Whilst the purchaser of cheap counterfeit goods may initially think that they are getting a bargain, they may find that they have wasted their money if the software doesn’t work and there is no technical support.
“The sale of counterfeit software also harms the software industry because it depletes the resources available for re-investing in the development of new software, and it further harms local businesses that lose out on the sale of legitimate software programmes.
“Trading Standards will always look to take action to protect the rights of the consumer and support legitimate traders in Milton Keynes.”