Former Hip-Hop DJ Singing The Blues in Federal Prison for Copyright Infringement

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Abounding Copyright Infringement

In 2012, the then 24-year-old Artur Sargsyan works as a hip-hop DJ in the sultry California club scene. Embracing his love of music, Sargsyan decides to take his music passion and business online. He does so by creating websites where music is made available for download, free of charge. Sargsyan boasts his music sites are to promote up-and-coming artists. In reality, however, Sargsyan delivers popular copyrighted music for free (copyright infringement), while profiting from it by selling advertisements on his sites.

Clearly, Sargsyan’s entrepreneurial acumen and technology skills make for an ideal Internet business. Unfortunately for Sargsyan, he selects the wrong opportunity. The problem is that his idea bilks money from thousands of artists, songwriters, producers, and others in the music industry. In reality, Sargsyan is engaging in rampant copyright infringement, a criminal offense punishable by law.

Illegal Downloads and Advertisers

Sargsyan’s two public-facing sites are newjamz.net and albumjams.com. The websites redirect users to another website, sharebeast.com, where the copyright music resides. Sharebeast is a cyber vault of sorts, and facilitates large-scale file storage and sharing. For context, Sharebeast permits users to download copyright music for free. Precisely how Sargsyan’s website obtains the copyright music remains a mystery to investigators. What is clear, however, is that advertising revenue exceeds more than $1 million for Sargsyan.