Sklyarov's company files motion arguing against DMCA

ElcomSoft, the employer of freed Russian programmer Dmitry Sklyarov, filed a series of motions with a U.S. District Court Monday in which it spells out how it plans to defend itself against charges that it violated terms of the 1998 Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA).

The Moscow-based company hopes to prove that the DMCA is vague, overly broad and was misapplied in the case, ElcomSoft's lead attorney, Joseph Burton, said in a statement. The motions were filed with the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, the company said.

Sklyarov was arrested by federal agents last July at the Def Con hacker conference in Las Vegas, after giving a presentation about a tool he developed at ElcomSoft that allowed users of Adobe System Inc.'s eBook Reader software to remove its copyright protections and open those files in the less secure Adobe PDF (portable document format).

After being detained in the U.S. for more than six months, charges filed by the U.S. Department of Justice against Sklyarov were dropped in December. ElcomSoft -- which was also charged in July -- remains under indictment. Sklyarov reached a deal with U.S. prosecutors that left him free to leave the country in exchange for testifying against ElcomSoft.

In its defense, ElcomSoft will attempt to poke holes in the DMCA and prove that it was misused against the company, the company said in the statement . ElcomSoft claims that its Advanced eBook Processor is protected by "fair use" because it affords Adobe eBook users the same rights they would have with a book -- the ability to copy or share it.

The defense aims to "clarify the boundaries of the DMCA," the company said in the statement.

ElcomSoft is scheduled to file a second set of motions regarding the issue of jurisdiction before it is scheduled to appear in the San Jose court on March 4, the company said.

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Matt Berger

PC World

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