CUPERTINO, Calif. - Sept. 28, 2005 Symantec Corp. (Nasdaq: SYMC) today announced it has been awarded more than $1 million in restitution as a result of a criminal software piracy case in Houston, Texas. Li Chen pled guilty to one count of trademark infringement and agreed to the restitution as part of a plea bargain.
The case, prosecuted by the Harris County District Attorney's office, was the result of a year-long investigation by the Houston Police Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The case was initiated based on information uncovered in an investigation conducted by Symantec and other software companies into Chen's activities.
After a search warrant was served by law enforcement authorities on November 17, 2004, more than 5,100 units of counterfeit Symantec software was seized from Chen's business, Microsource International, located in Houston. In addition, documents were seized revealing that between April 2002 and October 2004, Chen sold counterfeit Symantec software with a retail value of more than $9.9 million.
"Symantec is committed to vigorously battling software piracy and protecting the interests of our customers. This case was helped significantly by customers who sent samples of counterfeit software to Symantec's Brand Protection Task Force," said William Baird, Symantec's Global Investigations manager. "In addition, we'd like to thank the law enforcement authorities in Houston. Their efforts are a strong demonstration that there are serious criminal penalties to be paid for trafficking pirated software. The successful prosecution of this case has made a significant impact on constricting the supply of counterfeit Symantec software available in North America."
The restitution order was handed down by Judge J. Michael Wilkinson of the 179th District Court of Harris County, Texas. Assistant District Attorney Kate Dolan prosecuted the case.
The case builds upon numerous other activities conducted by Symantec to combat the proliferation of software piracy. Since September 2003, Symantec has won judgments in criminal and civil court of more than $19.5 million in damages against various entities for selling counterfeit Symantec software, including Sam Jain, Papa B Enterprises, Maryland Internet Marketing, eCommerce and CD Micro.
Symantec is the world leader in providing solutions to help individuals and enterprises assure the security, availability, and integrity of their information. Headquartered in Cupertino, Calif., Symantec has operations in more than 40 countries. More information is available at www.symantec.com.
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