Ebrahim Rostami of LJ’z, Britannia Walk, Aylesbury, was found guilty of five offences of dishonest reception of a television transmission (a Sky televised football match) with the intent to avoid payment of the applicable charge.
Rostami was ordered to pay a total of £6,072 in fines and costs.
This conviction was carried out by the Federation Against Copyright Theft (FACT) on behalf of its members and forms a key part of Sky’s commitment to protecting pubs who invest in legitimate Sky Sports subscriptions.
Stephen Gerrard, prosecuting manager at FACT, said: “This case clearly shows that if a licensee shows Sky broadcasts in their premises by any other means than a Sky commercial viewing agreement they will be prosecuted. If convicted they will receive an unlimited fine and can expect to pay substantial legal costs. Additionally they risk having their Personal Licence suspended or revoked.”
Sky said it was committed to visiting every licensed premises reported by other publicans for illegally showing Sky and would visit more than 700 pubs each week in towns and cities across the UK this football season.
Alison Dolan, deputy managing director at Sky Business, said: "We have had numerous cases in the past year of landlords being fined for this type of fraudulent activity and now, once again this case sends a clear message to publicans – Sky Sports is only available to pubs and clubs in mainland UK via a commercial viewing agreement from Sky; no other method of showing Sky Sports in licensed premises is legal.”
Any licensee affected by these issues can report suspected illegal broadcasting in confidence here.