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Dealer of forged Microsoft licenses goes to jail

Thousands of fakes resold to other dealers

By John Blau
January 26, 2007 12:00 PM ET

IDG News Service - A German court has sentenced a software dealer to nearly three years in prison for distributing Microsoft Corp. products with forged licenses.

The dealer, a 42-year-old Turk, was arrested in June 2006 by German police for selling Microsoft products with falsified licenses on a large scale, Microsoft Deutschland GmbH said Thursday. He had been held in custody until the court ruling, which ended with a sentence of two years, 11 months in prison.

After eight days of hearings, the district court in Bochum, Germany, found the Turkish dealer guilty of reselling 18,555 products with forged licenses to other dealers who were unaware of the illegal activity. The court referred to the dealer as a "clever offender" who was driven by greed. The dealer was not identified.

Microsoft estimates the loss of the forged licenses at $5.2 million, including the money paid by customers who acquired software they were unable to use.

Reprinted with permission from Story copyright 2014 International Data Group. All rights reserved.
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