Movie file-sharing suit dropped

It was announced that the company suing thousands of BitTorrent movie downloaders  under a profit making litigation scheme has dismissed thousands of alleged downloaders from suit, including those who downloaded The Hurt Locker. The makers of The Hurt Locker have now announced a cease-fire in the BitTorrent cases, together with the alleged sharers of Call Of The Wild, Familiar Strangers, The Casino Job and several other films.

The lawsuits were brought by law firm Dunlap, Grubb & Weaver, aka the U.S. Copyright Group (USCG), who apparently decided to drop all of the John Doe defendants whose details were given out by their ISPs. Although the reasons for this decision are unclear, it appears that it may be based upon a lack of jurisdiction over the defendants based upon recent developments in other copyright infringement cases.

Recently, courts have ruled against class-action copyright lawsuits in other cases for improperly joining defendants and filing cases outside of defendants’ jurisdictions. This is in keeping with earlier cases in which USCG dropped thousands of cases against alleged file-sharers of the movie Far Cry over jurisdictional issues.

“This is a huge victory to our clients and the thousands of defendants, and no doubt we will be sending letters of congratulations to our clients in these cases in the coming days,” Texas lawyer Robert Cashman, who represents several defendants, said in a response to the good news.

Although USCG has dropped the case against nearly 10,000 defendants, the cases were dismissed without prejudice, which means they can be refiled suit against the defendants again. A copy of the motion can be found here: copyright_infringement_suit_movie_dropped

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