LOPEZ-OWNED ABS-CBN has filed a $5-million lawsuit before the Canadian Federal Court against Techspeed Canada Inc., Joe Baddas, Ferdinand Molina and Todd Ross for copyright infringement, trademark infringement and enabling and inducing copyright infringement of ABS-CBN’s copyrighted works.
In a statement, ABS-CBN’s AVP & Head of Global Anti-Piracy Elisha Lawrence said that it is seeking damages against the plaintiffs for selling set-top boxes that enabled buyers to access hundreds of ABS-CBN’s copyrighted movies and TV shows.
On Facebook, Baddas and Ross are seen making a business presentation to new recruits, teaching them how to buy and sell the set-top boxes.
“ABS-CBN alleges that Techspeed Canada Inc., Joe Baddas, Ferdinand Molina and Todd Ross were taking advantage of ABS-CBN’s premium subscription service through its digital platform, TFC.tv, by registering over 78 emails and distributing the usernames and passwords to hundreds of customers,” Lawrence said.
“These customers were participating in this illegal activity by paying the Techspeed group and giving access to their credit card information,” she added.
Lawrence also warned consumers that these operations are not licensed or affiliated in any way with ABS-CBN.
“If you have any suspicions that they are not affiliated with ABS-CBN, please call the ABS-CBN office in the US or Canada to verify. We will continue to protect customers by shutting these operations down. There is only one genuine ABS-CBN internet subscription service and that is TFC.tv. To purchase a legitimate subscription call 1-855-832-2632 or go to TFC.tv,” she added.
ABS-CBN Canada Country Manager Jun Del Rosario, meanwhile, urged the Filipino community in Canada to be on the lookout for those who seek to undermine intellectual property rights and make money illegally from copyright infringement.
“These are pirates doing criminal activities. They will be caught. Their customers will end up losing their illegal subscriptions,” Del Rosario said. “So, you don’t want to fall victim to that scheme. Always go to our website TFC.tv to ensure that you are purchasing from the genuine TFC.”
David Lipkus, counsel for ABS-CBN in Canada, said ABS-CBN will continue to take all necessary steps to control access to its content.
“ABS-CBN invests tremendous resources into its high-quality, original content, and will continue to ensure that Canadians have access to legitimate ABS-CBN content directly from ABS-CBN,” Lipkus said.