White House Seeks Tougher Prison Terms for IP Crimes


Victoria Espinel, the top White House intellectual property official, wants stiffer prison sentences for those found guilty of crimes such as selling counterfeit goods for military or law enforcement use, reports Politico.com. she also wants illegal streaming of online content to be made a felony level crime when appropriate.

The recommendations were among a set of 20 suggestions Espinel made to Congress yesterday. Espinel called for legislation requiring tougher sentences for organized crime groups and gangs that deal in counterfeit goods or commit other IP crimes, as well as for repeat offenders. “Because of the high profit margin and shorter prison sentence for intellectual property crimes compared to other offenses, piracy and counterfeiting are a strong lure to organized criminal enterprises, which can use infringement as a revenue source to fund their other unlawful activities,” Espinel wrote in a blog post.

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