MANILA, Philippines—Roughly P2.7-million worth of allegedly smuggled games software were confiscated while several people were arrested following simultaneous raids in 12 shops in Metro Manila earlier this week, a Criminal Investigation and Detection Group official said Wednesday.
CIDG Director Samuel Pagdilao Jr. said operatives from the Anti-Transnational and Cyber Crime Division (ATCCD) confiscated 1,060 pieces of personal computer and play station games software in a raid on SM Megamall, Robinsons Magnolia, Elife @ Eton on Edsa, Park Square in Ayala Center, Makati City, Rockwell Information Center, Greenbelt Expo Exchange, Market Market in Taguig City, Robinsons Ermita, Trinoma Edsa, SM Annex at SM City North Edsa and the Datablitz warehouse in Pasay City last Monday.
Police Senior Superintendent Gilbert Sosa said that among the 32 suspects arrested, 11 were charged with Section 168, or unfair competition in relation to Section 179 of RA 8293, or the Intellectual Property Rights law punishable by two to five years imprisonment, or fines ranging from P50,000 to P200,000.
Charged were Glen Tena, Arvin Lamanilao, Christopher Decierdo, Frederick Japsay, Billie Jay Cuadra, Christian Dadula, Nico Villegas, Elvis Martin, Clint Fructuoso, John Badeo and Shannon Rosales.
Sosa said the operation stemmed from the complaint of Jose Enrico Demetrio Dingle, Head of Security of IPVG, owner of X-Play Online Games Inc.
The company is a video game publisher in the country and the exclusive distributor of all Blizzard Entertainment games and NBA 2K13 products.
“Datablitz Incorporated is not authorized to distribute and sell these products,” Sosa said, adding that the software games products were allegedly smuggled from Hong Kong and Singapore.
Pagdilao warned other computer software distributors against engaging in illegal distribution of such products, which can be considered as “economic sabotage.”
On the other hand, Pagdilao also reminded the public to be cautious when buying computer games and other software products by checking their seals of authenticity, and to buy only from authorized distributor shops.