A college student from Cal State Fullerton was arrested by federal agents on Monday by illegally running a home business of modifying Xbox, Playstation, Wii and other video game consoles to enable the machines to play pirated video games.
Matthew Lloyd Crippen was taken into custody by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents for allegedly violating the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998. According to NBC Los Angeles:
The college student is accused of modifying for personal financial gain technology affecting control or access to a copyrighted work. Each criminal count carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison. The charges against Crippen stem from an ICE investigation initiated late last year after the agency received a tip from the Entertainment Software Association.
Special Agent in Charge Robert Schoch, who heads the ICE investigations office in Los Angeles commented on the bust:
Playing with games in this way is not a game -- it is criminal. Piracy, counterfeiting and other intellectual property rights violations not only cost U.S. businesses jobs and billions of dollars a year in lost revenue, they can also pose significant health and safety risks to consumers.