CID raids Abu Dhabi shop selling illegal television services
ABU DHABI // A television shop caught illegally selling OSN services has been ordered to pay a Dh200,000 fine by the First Instance Court and its manager will be deported.
CID cadets raided the shop after receiving a report from OSN that the shop was selling unauthorised services and set-top boxes from the Indian pay-TV operator Dish TV.
Prosecutors referred the case to the First Instance Court after police found evidence of the shop’s illegal activities, which included Dish TV receivers and a computer seized during the raid.
The court also ordered the shop to close for a year, and that the shop manager be deported. The verdict is subject to appeal within 14 days.
Previously there had been 47 similar raids conducted by CID and the Department of Economic Development on hotels, shops and camps as a result of complaints by OSN.
“We are thankful to the CID and the Abu Dhabi Judicial Department for their swift and stern action ... the court verdict reiterates the seriousness with which the government regards TV piracy. We will continue to work with the authorities to curb TV piracy,” said David Butorac, chief executive officer of OSN, which is considered the region’s leading pay-TV network.
India based direct-to-home overspill services such as Dish TV India, Airtel Digital TV, Sun Direct and Tata Sky are unlicensed and unauthorised to operate in the Mena region.
Reports suggest that TV piracy costs the industry more than US$500 million (Dh1.83 billion) a year.
The Anti-Piracy Coalition has a campaign called Do the Right Thing, encouraging illegal pay-TV subscribers to swap their service for a legitimate OSN set-top box.
* The article has been amended since it was first published.
Updated: June 8, 2015 04:00 AM