Licensee hit with £35k bill for illegal Sky Sports screening

By Nikkie Thatcher

- Last updated on GMT

Big price to pay: one licensee had to fork out more than £35,000 for illegal sports screenings
Big price to pay: one licensee had to fork out more than £35,000 for illegal sports screenings

Related tags: Pub, Sky sports

A Gloucestershire licensee has been ordered to pay more than £35,000 after he was found to be infringing Sky’s copyright by showing Sky Sports without having the required commercial agreement.

Stephen Ashley from the Rotunda Tavern, in Cheltenham, was ordered to pay damages of £27,499.32 plus interest of £412.49 and costs of £7,867.50 – resulting in a total of £35,779.31.

Sky head of commercial piracy George Lawson said: “Orders like this demonstrate the seriousness of screening Sky Sports without the required commercial licence.

“It is damaging to the industry, and those licensees who choose to show content in this way should be aware they are at a high risk of being caught and facing substantial penalties.

“Our customers are very important to us and we will not hesitate in taking action against pubs that continue to screen Sky Sports fraudulently, ensuring the thousands of law-abiding pubs and clubs that pay for legitimate commercial Sky subscriptions are not short-changed.”

Another case

The Morning Advertiser ​contacted the pub but had not received a response at the time of publication.

Meanwhile, three licensees from one pub were ordered to pay almost £11k​ after illegally screening Sky Sports in September this year.

Anti-piracy organisation FACT brought the criminal prosecution at Maidstone Magistrates’ Court on Friday 13 September.

Jared Macdonnchadha, Richard Rodal and Karen Turner of the Red Bull were convicted in their absence of three offences each of dishonest reception of a television transmission with the intent to avoid paying the charge.

A total of £10,820.28 in fines and costs was awarded for the illegal screening of football matches.

Fines laid out

Karen Turner, the premises licence holder and the designated premises supervisor, was fined £2,500 on the first offence with no separate penalty on the other two offences.

She was ordered to pay costs of £936.76 and a £170 victim surcharge, totalling £3,606.76.

Jared Macdonnchadha, the business partner of Karen Turner was fined £2,500 on the first offence with no separate penalty on the other two offences.

He was also ordered to pay costs of £936.76 and a £170 victim surcharge, totalling £3,606.76.

Richard Rodal, the pub manager, was fined £2,500 on the first offence with no separate penalty on the other two offences.

He was told to pay costs of £936.76 and a £170 victim surcharge, a total of £3,606.76.

Related topics: Sport

Related news

Show more

Follow us

Pub Trade Guides

View more

FREE EMAIL NEWSLETTER

Subscribe to The Morning Advertiser

The definitive voice for the pub trade

Get the latest news, analysis and insights from the uk pub sector straight to your inbox!

Listen to The MA Podcast