Italian DJ hit with record MP3 piracy fine

An Italian DJ has been slapped with Euro 1.4 million fine for playing allegedly pirated MP3 files.

An Italian DJ is being slapped with a record fine of Euro 1.4 million (AU$2.32 million) after being caught with what are believed to be thousands of pirated MP3 music files and hundreds of illegally downloaded video clips, an international recording industry group said Thursday.

Italian police discovered the DJ playing the allegedly pirated music in nightclubs near Rome. It ordered the fine against the individual, whose identity was not revealed, after a raid of the suspect's home turned up none of the originally purchased music, a spokeswoman for the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) said. The DJ may also be subject to further criminal sanctions, the industry group said.

The suspect was caught with more than 2,000 allegedly pirated MP3s and 500 video clips. The fine imposed by Italian police is the largest in Europe against an individual for MP3 piracy, the IFPI said.

The recording industry group said it was pleased with the amount of fine since the DJ was making money touring clubs with the music, while the original artists had not been properly compensated.

The DJ was discovered as part of a police operation targeting radio stations and clubs around Rome, the IFPI said.

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