$7,000 in Damages Awarded Following Piracy of UFC 159

Adding to this site’s archived cases awarding damages for piracy of UFC pay per view programs, reasons for judgement were recently released awarding $7,000 in damages for the commercial piracy of UFC 159.

In the recent case (Joe Hand Promotions, Inc v. Richter) the Defendant operated a commercial establishment which displayed UFC 159 without paying the Plaintiff appropriate commercial sub licencing fees.  The Plaintiff sued and obtained default judgement.  In assessing damages at $7,000 Chief District Judge James Dever III provided the following reasons:

The court has subject-matter jurisdiction and personal jurisdiction. Shannah Louise Richter (“defendant”) failed to answer or otherwise defend as provided by the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure following proper service. Thus, on August 6, 2015, this court entered default. >See [D.E. 14]. On July 19, 2016, Joe Hand Productions, Inc. (“plaintiff”) filed a motion for default judgment [D.E. 17] and a memorandum in support [D.E. 18]. Defendant did not respond.

Plaintiff is an aggrieved party under the Federal Communications Act, 4 7 U.S. C. §§ 553 and 605. Defendant exhibited the closed circuit, “UFC 159: Jones v. Sonnen” broadcast, including all undercard bouts and the entire television broadcast, scheduled for April 27, 2013, without authorization from plaintiff. Moreover, defendant’s actions were willful and for purposes of direct or indirect commercial advantage or private financial gain.

IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED, ADJUDGED AND DECREED:

1. That judgment by default be entered in favor of plaintiff and against defendant, Shannah Louise Richter.

2. That plaintiff recover statutory damages pursuant to 47 U.S.C. § 605(e)(3)(C)(i)(II) from defendant in the amount of $2,000.00.

3. That plaintiff recover additional damages pursuant to 47 U.S.C. § 605(e)(3)(C)(ii) from defendant in the amount of $5,000.00.

4. That plaintiff recovers attorneys’ fees from defendant in the amount of $1,500.00 and costs in the amount of $510.00.

5. That plaintiff receive post-judgment interest on the amounts awarded herein at the legal rate from the date of this judgment until paid.

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