Is selling pirated software a federal or state crime

Asked over 4 years ago - Santa Barbara, CA

My friend bought some pirated software on ebay and wants to resell it, is it federal or state jurisdiction that deals with pirated software.

Attorney answers (2)

  1. Joshua Sabert Lowther

    Pro

    Contributor Level 17

    Answered . Federal and state jurisdiction would exist under your factual scenario. However, these cases are almost always prosecuted by the federal government.

  2. Jon W Norris

    Contributor Level 5

    Answered . The selling and/or reselling of pirated software is certainly a Federal Offense and such cases are almost always prosecuted Federally. Please see the reference to the U.S. Copyright Act below. In addition such actions can be a violation of state law in most jurisdictions. Your friend should be aware that the reselling of such software is a criminal offense which is being ever more aggressively prosecuted all the time. In addition, the purchase and use of such "pirated" software is a crime in and of itself. For further information, legal advice and legal representation, your friend should seek the advice of an attorney experienced in handling such cases, in federal and State court in their jurisdiction.

    Copyright Act, Title 17 of the US Code. The Act gives the owner of the copyright "the exclusive rights" to "reproduce the copyrighted work" and "to distribute copies ... of the copyrighted work" (Section 106). It also states that "anyone who violates any of the exclusive rights of the copyright owner ... is an infringer of the copyright" (Section 501), and sets forth several penalties for such conduct. Those who purchase a license for a copy of software do not have the right to make additional copies without the permission of the copyright owner, except (i) copy the software onto a single computer and (ii) make "another copy for archival purposes only," which are specifically provided in the Copyright Act (Section 117).

    LEGAL DISCLAIMER- THIS ANSWER IS NOT INTENDED TO AND DOES NOT CONSTITUTE LEGAL ADVICE AND DOES NOT ESTABLISH AN ATTORNEY-CLIENT RELATIONSHIP. CONSULT QUALIFIED LEGAL COUNSEL IN YOUR JURISDICTION FOR IMMEDIATE LEGAL ADVICE.

Can't find what you're looking for? Ask a Lawyer

Get free answers from experienced attorneys.

 

Ask now

31,897 answers this week

3,306 attorneys answering

Ask a Lawyer

Get answers from top-rated lawyers.

  • It's FREE
  • It's easy
  • It's anonymous

31,897 answers this week

3,306 attorneys answering