CIDG: DataBlitz raided for smuggling software games

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In a statement, the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) said it netted P2.7-million worth of smuggled games in its raid of 11 stores and warehouse of DataBlitz last Monday, Nov. 5. CIDG director Samuel D Pagdilao Jr. said operating elements from the Anti-Transnational and Cyber Crime Division (ATCCD) under Police Senior Superintendent Gilbert Sosa confiscated a total of 1,060 pieces of PC and PSP games DVDs amounting to P2,650,000. The policemen also arrested 32 persons following the raid conducted at SM Megamall, Robinsons Magnolia, Elife @ Eton in EDSA, Park Square in Ayala Center, Makati City, Rockwell Information Center, Greenbelt Expo Exchange, Market Market in Taguig City, Robinsons Ermita, Trinoma EDSA, SM Annex at SM City North Edsa and at the DataBlitz warehouse in Pasay City. Sosa said that after examining the participation to the crime of all the arrested suspects, 11 of them were charged with Section 168 or unfair competition in relation to Sec. 179 of RA 8293 or the Intellectual Property Rights Law. The offense is punishable by 2 to 5 years imprisonment or fines ranging from P50,000 to P200,000. Sosa said the operation stemmed from the complaint of Jose Enrico Demetrio Dingle, head of security of IPVG, owner of X-Play Online Games, the video game publisher in the country and the exclusive distributor of all Blizzard Entertainment games, including NBA 2K13 products. Sosa said that DataBlitz was not authorized to distribute and sell the products, adding that the software games were smuggled into the country from Hongkong and Singapore. But, following the uproar from local gamers who said the raid was an overkill and that X-Play was being greedy for banning the sale of NBA 2K13 that did not the pass through them, the distributor issued a statement that questioned the presence of the software games inside the stores. Instead of ?diverting the issue by throwing baseless and unfounded accusations?, X-Play said it is challenging DataBlitz to explain why it was buying and selling unauthorized video game products. ?Shouldn?t established retailers claiming to practice good business not sell unauthorized products?? X-Play said in a statement. ?The action of DataBlitz was not only detrimental to X-Play but also affected other smaller retailers, game stores and entrepreneurs. We hope nothing more but to resolve this predicament but will hold firm in protecting the industry from unauthorized and illegal operators,? X-Play said. ]]>

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