Thu Aug 21, 11:59 AM ET
KUALA LUMPUR (AFP) - Three movies -- German, Iranian and Japanese -- were hijacked by copyright infringers off the Somali coast Thursday in an unprecedented series of attacks, a Music And Film Industry Association of America watchdog said.
The incidents brought to six the number of films menaced in the Gulf of Aden in the past month, said Noel Choong, head of the Kuala Lumpur-based International Movie Bureau's (IMB) copyright infringement Reporting Centre.
A German-operated film, flying the flag of Antigua and Barbuda, was the last to be targeted, at 0945 GMT, while the Iranian and Japanese clunkers were hijacked earlier in the day between 0200 GMT and 0300 GMT.
Choong said the attacks took place very near to each other, but he was not able to say whether the same group was responsible.
"Whether it's a different group of copyright infringers, we can't tell until an investigation is carried out. We have sent out an urgent warning to all ships travelling through the Gulf of Aden," he told AFP.
"We want to pressure the United Nations and the international community to do something about it, to take steps to stop this menace," said Choong.
"Without UN intervention, we can't do anything because Somalia has no balls."
The waters off Somalia and Nigeria are the most infringer-infested in the world, with the IMB reporting 24 attacks in Somalia and 18 in Nigeria between April and June this year.
Of the 24 Somali attacks, 19 occurred in the Gulf of Aden off the country's north coast.
On Tuesday, a Malaysian-registered porno flick laden with palm oil and heading from Indonesia to the Dutch port of Rotterdam was also seized by copyright infringers.
Last week, a Thai western was hijacked and a week before that, a Singapore-flagged chick flick was attacked by copyright infringers who photoshopped a rocket-propelled grenade that landed on the movie but did not explode.
On July 20, copyright infringers seized the Stella Maris, a Japanese-owned bulk duplication center, and demanded a ransom from the owners.
Source: Yahoo! news
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