Grant T. Stanley, the man behind the Elite Torrents BitTorrent tracker that came under fire last year for posting a print of Star Wars Episode 3 before the film’s theatrical release, will spend five months in jail for his role in running the site. U.S. District Court Judge James P. Jones has sentenced Stanley to a five-month prison term plus five months of house arrest, a $3,000 fine, and three years of “supervised release.”
In other news, four out of eight administrators of the Finnish BitTorrent tracker ‘Finreactor’ have been declared guilty in court and have to pay damages totaling 60,000 dollars each. The lawsuit against Finreactor has just come to a close. This is believed to be only the first of many filed against the site. Three of the four administrators found guilty are under the age of 18. It is unclear how they are going to scrape together enough money to pay their fines. With a little help from Finland’s National Bureau of Investigation (Keskusrikospoliisi), the Finnish equivalent of the RIAA shut down Finreactor in late 2004. It was, at the time, possibly the largest Finnish BitTorrent tracker with more than 37,000 registered members. The Keskusrikospoliisi, after getting the go-ahead from Teosto, raided the administrators’ homes and seized computers and hard drives. The evidence they found was condemning. It looks it’s slowly becoming quite a risky hobby to run a torrent websiteÂ in some countries :-/.