The Southern California-based adult film company John Stagliano Inc, better known as Evil Angel, has apparently hired a German anti-piracy company to track down and sue file sharers. A recently leaked contract shows that Evil Angel ordered Germany's Digiprotect to track more than 800 individual film titles, ranging from "Euro Hardball 15" to "She-male Domination Nation". The contract shows that Evil Angel assigned exclusive P2P distribution rights of these movie titles to Digiprotect, which in turn can use these rights in lawsuits against individual file sharers.

Germany has become a kind of battle ground for P2P enforcement in recent years, with companies like Digiprotect and associated lawyers starting more than 100,000 criminal investigations against individual file sharers. Most of these investigations are later dropped, but the rights holders use them as a launch pad for civil enforcement, billing file sharers anywhere from a few hundred to several thousand Euros.

Critics contend that these lawsuits are not about stopping infringement, but about making a quick buck, and Digiprotect's own slogan "Turn piracy into profit" seems to support this argument. German prosecutors have recently decided to put an end to these lawsuits by only opening cases with at least 200 films shared because their offices have been burried by thousands and thousands of lawsuits each month, costing the German tax payer millions.

It's somewhat ironic that John Stagliano is also at the center of a different kind of lawsuit in the US. Stagliano has been indicted for distributing obscene materials via mail and online. Adult industry magazine XBiz reported back in April that Stagliano's lawyer thought this kind of lawsuit was "a waste of the government’s resources."

(via gulli)

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