New York Man Pleads Guilty to Selling Pirated Software

A Syracuse, New York, man has pleaded guilty to criminal copyright infringement for selling more than US$270,000 worth of pirated copies of business, engineering and graphic design software online, the U.S. Department of Justice said.

Robert Cimino, 59, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia on Thursday, the DOJ said in a press release. Cimino advertised the sale of discounted popular software programs on a variety of Internet advertising forums, the DOJ said. In one ad on Sell.com, Cimino advertised a variety of Autodesk products at prices several thousand dollars below typical commercial prices.

Customers would contact Cimino by e-mail and would typically pay for the products by PayPal, the DOJ said. Cimino would then mail infringing copies of Adobe, Autodesk, Intuit and Quark programs that he had burned to CD or DVD to the customers, including customers in Virginia.

From February 2006 to September 2009, Cimino received at least $270,000 from his sales of infringing software products, he told the court.

Cimino is scheduled to be sentenced by U.S. District Judge Anthony Trenga on May 28. He faces a maximum sentence of five years in prison, a $250,000 fine, restitution and forfeiture.

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