Virgin pursues £2.5m piracy claim

February 10, 2014 10.43 Europe/London By Julian Clover

Virgin MediaVirgin Media is seeking £2.5 million in lost profits from a Derby man convicted of illegally distributing content from the cablenet.

Paul Hartrick was sentence in 2012, one of four men sentenced at Derby Crown Court, after he pleaded guilty to conspiracy to defraud the company.

Hartrick, who was sentenced to five years in jail, sold so-called Starview boxes to customers who received free access to Virgin Media without paying a subscription.

A Virgin Media spokesperson said: “This fraud exploited consumers who were misled into spending hundreds of pounds on illegal boxes believing they would be able to access pay TV services without subscription.

“Commercial fraud is a serious crime and we will investigate and prosecute individuals and groups connected with this type of fraud to the full extent of the law.”

At least 6,600 people are believed to have purchased the boxes for a one-off fee.