The U.S. Department of Justice is giving more than $2.4 million to 13 jurisdictions to fight piracy and theft of intellectual property, says Corporate Counsel. In the past three years, Justice has granted more than $10 million to 34 law enforcement agencies to tackle intellectual property theft. The new award money will be used to pay for new police department positions specifically tasked with investigating such crime, as well as to develop and implement more law enforcement and prosecutor training programs.
The theft of intellectual property is believed to cost U.S. businesses and individuals millions of dollars. It includes illegal copying of copyrighted books, movies, and other materials; the sale of counterfeit goods; and the theft of technology and trade secrets. In January, Justice charged two corporations and seven people with operating an international organized criminal enterprise responsible for massive worldwide online piracy of numerous types of copyrighted works through Megaupload.com and related sites. In March, federal law enforcement agencies said they disrupted a conspiracy to import $300 million in counterfeit goods from China and illegal drugs from Taiwan.