The operators of a pirate streaming organisation have today been jailed for a total of 17 years for conspiracy to defraud; some of the longest sentences ever issued for piracy-related crimes.
Steven King, who masterminded the fraud, has been sentenced to seven years and four months’ imprisonment. Paul Rolston received a sentence of six years and four months, and Daniel Malone a sentence of three years and three months. The jury at Warwick Crown Court delivered their guilty verdict after a four-week trial.
Trading under the names Dreambox (unincorporated), Dreambox TV Limited, and Digital Switchover Limited, via websites at dreamboxtv.co.uk and yourfootie.com, the three men had provided illegal access to Premier League football to more than 1,000 pubs, clubs, and homes throughout England and Wales. The fraudulent companies earned in excess of £5million through their illegal activity.
The operation used a range of technologies to continue their fraud over the course of a decade. Most recently, the defendants engaged various third parties located in the UK and across Europe to create illegal broadcast streams, which they then sold on to their customers.
Their suppliers included Terry O’Reilly, who was sentenced to four years’ imprisonment in 2016 for a conspiracy to defraud the Premier League and its pay-TV providers. Over the course of the conspiracy, premium content from more than 20 broadcasters around the world was fraudulently obtained and supplied by the defendants.
All of these methods enabled users to view pay-TV without the permission of, and without making any appropriate payment to, the relevant broadcasters and content owners.