Movie Boot-Legging Crackdown in Lindsay

March 19, 2009 8:59:28 PM PDT
Police in the South Valley say they've stopped a large CD and DVD pirating operation at a local store. Authorities say the store in Lindsay was selling Blockbuster Movies, for under a buck.The owners of this "Mostly 98-Cents Store" off Highway 65 in Lindsay were served a search warrant by police Wednesday. Lindsay Police says 125 DVDs and more than 800 CDs were pirated and sold at the store.

Customers say they're surprised by the allegations. Rebecca Miller said, "I love it because the people are kind and honest and I could never imagine them doing anything underhanded." Rebecca Miller said the music and videos sold in the store didn't look like they had been copied illegally. "They look like the kind you see in any dollar store the regular shape size condition and everything," said Miller.

The owners say they've done nothing wrong and tell us off camera that they bought the DVDs and hundreds of music CDs from a man in Los Angeles.

Police say they also seized equipment used to illegally copy and manufacture movies and CDs. The owner admits police took a stack of blank DVDs and a machine to copy movies but insists he only used it for home videos. Employees at Movie Gallery, which is in the same shopping center as the "Mostly 98-Cents Store" says pirating DVDs hurts their business.

Troy Schuh said, "And there's really nothing you can do about it and of course it's always going to take away from our business." Schuh says he was suspicious that there were illegally-copied movies being sold nearby after people came in asking him about it. "People have come over here and asked do you guys sell illegal copies of DVDs? And I mean we don't, we can't it's illegal but just somebody coming in saying that just kind of hints that somebody else is doing that," said Schuh.

Lindsay Police will soon hand over the case to the district attorney's office to decide if any criminal charges will be filed.

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