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Cornwall man caught selling illegal Premier League subscriptions faces potential imprisonment

A Cornwall man has admitted to selling dodgy streaming subscriptions that allowed users to watch Premier League football matches.

Steven Underwood, of Illogan in west Cornwall, appeared at Truro Magistrates Court on Wednesday morning, where he faced two charges under the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988, and the Fraud Act 2006. Mr Underwood admitted to both, and faces potential imprisonment. He will be sentenced at Truro Crown Court on December 19.

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Police officers and Cornwall Council Trading Standards representatives raided Mr Underwood’s home on January 16, after the Federation Against Copyright Theft (FACT) first cottoned on to what he might be up to.

“A number of devices including an iPhone, tower computer and laptop computer were seized [at Underwood’s home]. These were forensically examined and compelling evidence of Underwood’s unlawful activity was recovered,” FACT announced in a press release today.

Officers say he had sold around £400,000 worth of “illegal streaming subscriptions that enabled users to view pay-TV without the permission of, and without making any appropriate payment to, the relevant broadcasters and content owners”.

Specifically, these subscriptions provided access to Premier League games being broadcasted by Sky Sports and BT Sport, FACT told Trusted Reviews.

It isn’t yet clear if Mr Underwood was also selling illegal streaming devices, or if he had been advertising the services he was selling as being legal.

“We are constantly working to remove sellers of illegal streaming subscriptions from the market and bring them to justice,” said Kieron Sharp, the CEO of FACT.

“The message is clear − if you are tempted to sell access to content that is not licensed or owned by you, you risk facing a criminal conviction. We encourage consumers to use legitimate services that are safe to use and ensure that content creators are properly remunerated.”

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