Saturday, March 28, 2009

Here we go again

Seven British expats have been arrested in connection with the illegal provision of satellite TV on the Costa Blanca and Costa Cálida.

More than 7,000 customers, mostly of British origin, are thought to have paid 890 euros for the decoder and installation and a further 15 euros a month for their channels. The offenders reportedly did not pay for the rights to the channels, nor did they declare their earnings for tax purposes. Their illegal operations could have netted around 30 million euros.

Nine properties were raided in Los Montesinos, Rojales, San Pedro del Pinatar and Orihuela Costa. Guardia Civil officers seized 90,000 euros in cash, together with broadcasting equipment valued at around 600,000 euros. Four men and three women were detained and charged with offences against the tax authorities and intellectual property.

An investigation was launched last year in August after police oficers became suspicious of an unusually high number of satellite dishes and decoders imported from the United Kingdom and Ireland at the home of one of the people now under arrest. They are said to have operated as a ‘ghost’ company, which did not appear on the registrar records and was not signed up to the social security office.

Everyone knows that re-broadcasting British TV is illegal so why do people continue to sign up with these companies? Buying stolen TV programmes is really no different to buying any other stolen goods.

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