Jury Clears Members of Notorious Music Piracy Group

Written by Ernesto on March 22, 2010 

Two members of the Scene release group “Rabid Neurosis” (RNS) have been found not guilty on charges of conspiracy to commit copyright infringement. The case, which emphasized the group’s role in making albums available before the official release date, was the result of a major music piracy investigation in the US.

rnsLast summer four alleged members of the “Rabid Neurosis” were indicted following a multi-year investigation by the FBI. The four were charged with conspiracy to commit copyright infringement, and faced a maximum of 5 years in jail, a $250,000 fine and possible payment of damages to the RIAA.

The case was heard at the Judicial District of Texas last Friday. The authorities claimed that the group was one of the most active music release groups, releasing tens of thousands of albums between 1999 and 2007. The group was believed to have contacts at a CD manufacturing plant in North Carolina, which allowed its members to leak dozens of titles before their official release.

The albums were then shared on so-called topsites and made available to members of other release groups. Among the titles listed in the indictment were Eminem’s ‘Encore’ and ‘How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb’ by U2. The group benefited from this by gaining credit in the Scene, the authorities claimed.

The RIAA, the alleged victim in the case, had hoped to recoup some of the losses allegedly caused by the group but a Houston jury decided otherwise. Both Matthew Chow and Adil Cassim, the alleged leader of the group at some point, were released of all charges and walked away as free men.

“I am relieved by the jury’s verdict and I am grateful to my attorney for his hard work,” Chow said in a comment on the jury’s decision.

Attorney Terry Yates, who represented Chow, commented, “We encountered some extremely complex factual and legal issues in this case. The jury was very attentive during the trial. Their verdict was just.”

Further details on the jury’s verdict have not yet been published. The two other members of RNS that were listed in the indictment pleaded guilty. It is unclear whether or not these two, and two other members that pleaded guilty before, have been sentenced already.

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35 Responses (Add yours or TrackBack)

1 Mar 22, 2010 at 18:18 by Freeleech

The world is changing and there’s no way back. MAFIAA fighting against filesharing looks like Don Quixote fighting against windmills.

They’ll lose more and more every day. Everywhere. Even in the US.

2 Mar 22, 2010 at 18:24 by Anonymous

good now how about justice to the prospection members.

since they have abused there power i see it only fit that there executed.

3 Mar 22, 2010 at 18:24 by Lucky Man

they are blessed. RIAA/MPAA need to get place like hell cuz they are worry about money… money is sins!

4 Mar 22, 2010 at 18:27 by Aaron

Now we know. Intelligence of TX jury > intelligence of MN jury. Well duh! Cause there ain’t nothin’ dumber than a MN jury!

5 Mar 22, 2010 at 18:32 by Anonymous

RNS put out everything back in the day. They were an excellent scene group. Happy about this verdict.

6 Mar 22, 2010 at 18:45 by Aerilus

Criminal court equals no appeal but thanks to oj these guys will be back in civil court before they can even get unpacked, you have got to love the legal system. At least there is bankruptsy

7 Mar 22, 2010 at 18:54 by Yarick

Either that or they will do what they always do. Appeal. Appeal until they get what they want. Appeal until they bankrupt the opponent. It’s an absolute farce.

8 Mar 22, 2010 at 18:57 by Anonymous

wow…rns. those were the days

9 Mar 22, 2010 at 19:01 by Wolfy

“The group benefited from this by gaining credit in the Scene, the authorities claimed”.

So rather than look at say a bank account which is clear and unequivocale evidence, the authorities say you benefit in reputation, which is a metaphysical concept that cannot be measured.

10 Mar 22, 2010 at 19:25 by TheSpark

@7 (Yarick): Since this is a US case they can not appeal. US has the “double jeopardy” law that applies to all criminal cases. Since this was a criminal case and they were found not guilty by a jury of their peers, its over. RIAA lost.

11 Mar 22, 2010 at 19:26 by ex-Texan

Texas is obviously a poor place to try scene groups on copyright charges.

Normally these trials all take place in Northern Virginia, where the FBI has had close to a 100% conviction rate. Most of the accused plead guilty rather than face the prospect of a long prison sentence handed down by notoriously unsympathetic judges.

Also, it’s well known that Texas has historically had the most corrupt legal system in the country, where judges are elected and their campaigns financed predominantly by lawyers who appear in their court.

12 Mar 22, 2010 at 19:50 by in.cog.nito

Counter. Lawsuit.

13 Mar 22, 2010 at 20:11 by Dan

It’s a shame two members already pled guilty.

14 Mar 22, 2010 at 20:34 by Anonymous

I wish they did not have pleaded guilty.

This plea bargain stuff is unconstitutional because it deprive citizen of fair trial.

The offer of clemency is not constitutional ever since it constitute a presumptive assumption of both the verdict and the sentence before the trial even begin.

15 Mar 22, 2010 at 21:17 by Ninja

Wow, in the face…

If Texas has the most corrupt system then how those two were not convicted?

16 Mar 22, 2010 at 21:47 by RIAAtard

This is justice. They still do not learn. They need to understand internet and most importantly understand how to market and make money, instead of hoping on few individuals taken to court to pay millions to them.

They think it will scare filesharers. It won’t. Technology will advance. It is never static. People and technology will move on and these dumb, filthy rich fat cats are 5-10 years behind everyone else.

The world will be a better place if these middlemen go bankrupt and disappear from the scene. Then the artists that they allegedly protect will truly see all the millions taken from them by these “middlemen”.

17 Mar 22, 2010 at 22:31 by matthew chow

I was wondering when this would get to torrentfreak..

18 Mar 22, 2010 at 22:54 by Trelew

The problem will be that those in the rights holder industry will buy out all the ISP and change all the customer contracts to their liking.

As for the double jeopardy clause, I’m not too sure that is safe from an appeal or being sued in a civil court. Which these rich corporate bastards will probably do.

19 Mar 23, 2010 at 00:09 by townie2

FBI multi year investigation? how many tax dollars did that cost? hopefully they will think twice before pursuing cases like this again.

20 Mar 23, 2010 at 01:22 by antiantipiracy.blogspot.com

RIAA should be sued for trying to put those people WHO CARE ABOUT PEOPLE in jail.

21 Mar 23, 2010 at 01:49 by .

Hey they forgot to bribr someone again!

22 Mar 23, 2010 at 01:53 by neostyles

Their verdict was just? Is that what they are calling it? These career criminals made god knows how many albums available over the internet and they are walked way just like that?

[quote]RIAA should be sued for trying to put those people WHO CARE ABOUT PEOPLE in jail.[/quote]
Right.. just not the people who put their hard work and lives into making music. You are a moron.

How exactly can you look at everything they have done and come to the conclusion that they are innocent?

23 Mar 23, 2010 at 02:02 by Anonymous

Sharing is Moneytizing for the Admins

Who says Piracy and civil infringement doesn’t pay?

24 Mar 23, 2010 at 02:40 by cappiez

@neostyles

Yeah, cause the RIAA did a whole shit ton to put that music out.. they were right there the entire time.

25 Mar 23, 2010 at 03:22 by dont be stupid neo..

@ neofaag:

how is it possible that you are so ignorant. ive read your utterly nonsensical posts many times, and even though i feel as though every time i do my IQ goes south a little, evidence points to the contrary.

your attitude is such garbage. “career criminals” ???? gimme a fking break. you prove you are an idiot every single time you post.

they are not criminals, and their activity hurts the industry in no way, shape or form. no amount of trolling will change this; accept it.

following your faulty logic, (as i have been reading posts here for many months now), even the LOANING of a movie to a neighbor would constitute “criminal activity” in your eyes, as people have viewed ‘intellectual property’ (bogus concept) for free, and the ‘industry’ has received no payment for it. this is the bulk of your argument as well as the ‘industrys’. quit crying and deal with life as it comes, not as you wish it could be. (ie: give up, you lose, losers).

“How exactly can you look at everything they have done and come to the conclusion that they are innocent?”<——-because its filesharing, duh. not 'wrong', and not 'crime'. they share files. personally, i find it really hard to believe that you have decided to hang here all the time, and arent a file sharer. you spout your nonsense and just hang around the torrnet-related forums? sure.

so either troll or poser or closet-sharer. im not sure which is worse.

26 Mar 23, 2010 at 03:27 by tman

Quick someone get neostyles a tissue.

27 Mar 23, 2010 at 04:25 by Anonymous

One more win for the good guys.

28 Mar 23, 2010 at 07:19 by cr3

RNS were top quality followed closely by uF – hi guys!!

29 Mar 23, 2010 at 07:27 by antiantipiracy.blogspot.com

”Right.. just not the people who put their hard work and lives into making music. You are a moron.”

You must be one of those who think that artists own their music. They don’t. Almost all the money go to the music industry, moron.

30 Mar 23, 2010 at 08:12 by Carefully watching

I hope torrentfreak post an article about the follow up. I would like to know why they were not found guilty. I am totally pro P2P but to do prereleases its very easy to get pinched. For them to get off completely after having the FBI track them down etc is amazing. I can’t wait to read more details.

31 Mar 23, 2010 at 11:43 by uk

with all the crime in the USA you’d think that the FBI would not concern themselves with civil matters.

who owns/controls the government?

32 Mar 23, 2010 at 15:47 by antiantipiracy.blogspot.com

@ 31 – UK

In US you don’t own the government, they own you.

33 Mar 23, 2010 at 21:26 by Black Swan Social Media, Inc.

@32

Actually, the Corporations own you, because they control the government.

34 Mar 24, 2010 at 08:16 by mattchow

@ 30

what did you want to know?

35 Mar 26, 2010 at 17:16 by Xult

thats the idea… get judged by twelve extremely honest file sharers

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