US Jury convicts man in DMCA case

Wednesday, 24 September 2003, 9:34 AM EST

The Los Angeles jury found 38-year-old Thomas Michael Whitehead guilty on Friday of selling hardware that could access DirecTV satellite broadcasts without paying for them, according to the U.S. attorney's office in Los Angeles.

Whitehead, who was also known by his computer name "JungleMike," was convicted on one count of conspiracy, two counts of selling hardware that unlawfully decrypted the broadcasts, and three counts of violating the DMCA.

With the six felony convictions, Whitehead faces up to 30 years in federal prison and fines of as much as $2.75 million. Sentencing is scheduled for Jan. 26, 2004.

The DMCA, signed into law by President Clinton in 1998, made it illegal to circumvent commercial antipiracy software, among other provisions.

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