Symantec announced Dec. 18 the company won a victory in the battle against piracy when a court awarded it $12 million in damages against a distributor selling counterfeit Symantec software throughout North America.
The verdict was handed down by the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California in Los Angeles. The court ruled against Carmelo Cerrelli of Interplus Online, a Canadian-based organization selling software in the United States and Canada. According to Symantec, the verdict constitutes one of the largest single judgments awarded to the security vendor in a software piracy case.
"The size of the judgment against Interplus indicates how big their operation was throughout North America," said Marc Brandon, director of Symantec Global Brand Protection, in a statement. "We were particularly encouraged by the Court's finding that the infringement was willful, so that Interplus' owner, Mr. Cerrelli, faces heightened personal exposure. Shutting down their ability to move counterfeit Symantec software is a tremendous step towards protecting unsuspecting end users from the security threats posed by counterfeit software."
The case was filed in civil court and included claims from Symantec alleging that Interplus engaged in copyright and trademark infringement involving numerous Symantec products, including Norton SystemWorks, Norton AntiVirus, Norton Ghost and Symantec pcAnywhere.