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RIAA Counsel Richard Gabriel Addresses The Court  (Source: Wired Threat Level)

The Jury Found Jammie Thomas Guilty and Awarded $222,000 in Damages  (Source: Wired Threat Level)
The RIAA adds a notch to its belt of legal victories

“This is what can happen if you don’t settle,” said RIAA attorney Richard Gabriels, speaking to reporters just outside the Duluth, Minnesota Courthouse, minutes after Jammie Thomas was found liable for copyright infringement to the tune of $222,000.
Thomas, a single mom with two kids, left the courthouse without comment and did not speak with reporters.
Under the username “Tereastarr,” Thomas was found sharing just over 1,700 files via the Kazaa network on February 21, 2005. Of those 1,700 tracks, 24 were named – including music from popular artists such as AFI, Green Day, and Aerosmith – and for each one she was held liable for $9,250 worth of damages, coming to a grand total of $222,000.
Brian Toder, Thomas’ defense attorney, maintained that there existed no proof that Thomas was the person behind the keyboard, noting that Thomas or her computer may have been the victim of zombie botnet, spoofing attacks, or malicious crackers. “All we know is that Jammie Thomas didn’t do it,” said Toder, adding that Thomas was “not the person marauding as Tereastarr.”
This defense did not appear to hold up as it was found that Thomas used “Tereastarr” all around the internet, including online shopping, chat services, e-mail, and even dating services. The offending songs were linked to her cable modem’s MAC address, as well as her home IP address.
Gabriels called Thomas’ defense “misdirection, red herrings, and smoke and mirrors.”
Complicating Thomas’ defense was testimony from an ex-boyfriend saying while he had never seen her actively downloading music, she did have her hard drive replaced a month after her computer was picked up in the RIAA’s dragnets. Toder said that this was due to hard drive problems – something Thomas’ ex-boyfriend remembered her complaining about beforehand – but the RIAA argued that she had it changed to cover her tracks.
Forensic scientists could not find any evidence of file sharing on her new hard drive, and her old hard drive was not admitted as evidence.
Capitol Records v. Jammie Thomas, as Thomas’ loss is more formally known, was the first lawsuit of its kind to proceed before a jury as well as a landmark case that set precedent heavily favoring the RIAA in future legal battles. U.S. District Judge Michael Davis ruled that one could be guilty of copyright infringement merely by the act of making copyrighted songs available for download; as a result the RIAA did not need to establish that Thomas at her computer at the time her was accessed by investigators, nor did they need to prove that anyone actually downloaded the music she offered.
While the RIAA no longer publishes the number of lawsuits it’s filed in its four-years-and-counting legal campaign against file sharers, many publications speculate that that number stands anywhere between 18,000 and 36,000 lawsuits, with untold more settling long before the actual trial.

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RE: Disgusting
By SirLucius on 10/4/2007 9:20:31 PM , Rating: 2
Wow, I hadn't heard about the jury make up. sounds like a fair and well balanced jury to me. *sarcasm*

RE: Disgusting
By Master Kenobi on 10/4/2007 9:55:55 PM , Rating: 2
This will be appealed and likely declared a mistrial or knocked down to some nominal fee like "500 bux".

RE: Disgusting
By kitchme on 10/4/2007 10:12:47 PM , Rating: 2
Wish I could see into the future.

RE: Disgusting
By Polynikes on 10/4/2007 10:15:07 PM , Rating: 2
Even if it wasn't, how the hell do they expect her to pay that? I'd refuse outright.

RE: Disgusting
By mdogs444 on 10/4/2007 10:45:57 PM , Rating: 2
I dont know entirely about civil suits, but they can seek damages by having a % automatically deducted from pay from your employer.

But im not sure what kind of cases that revolves around.

RE: Disgusting
By masher2 on 10/5/2007 12:19:45 AM , Rating: 2
An award in any civil case is grounds for having your wages garnished, and/or your home and other hard assets seized.

RE: Disgusting
By rdeegvainl on 10/5/2007 1:35:01 AM , Rating: 4
could she just then provide them a copy of the songs? cause seems to me if they are worth that much she should just give them equal value.

RE: Disgusting
By JoshuaBuss on 10/7/07, Rating: -1
RE: Disgusting
By borismkv on 10/4/2007 11:20:10 PM , Rating: 2
Civil awards are usually paid at a small rate for a long period of time. She could potentially declare bankruptcy and not have to pay all of the fee, but the damage to her credit would be highly destructive for many many years.

RE: Disgusting
By walk2k on 10/5/2007 1:30:19 PM , Rating: 2
Oh she won't pay a dime. First of all they will appeal this forever, and I'm sure there are people setting up legal defense funds as we speak. Secondly she could simply declare bankrupcy if she had to. The RIAA won't get a dime of that money.

RE: Disgusting
By masher2 on 10/5/2007 4:18:42 PM , Rating: 2
You haven't seen the new bankruptcy laws. Unless she was already flat broke to start with, she won't walk away from this without paying a respectable portion of the amount.

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