A judgment by Canada’s Federal Court in Ottawa holds the pirate operator behind TVAddons responsible for C$25 million (about US$19.7M), payable in a lump sum to a plaintiff group comprised of Canadian pay TV companies.
In early June 2017, the pay TV companies, including units of Bell, Videotron, Groupe TVA, and Rogers, filed a lawsuit claiming that TVAddons was distributing programming that was licensed to those companies. At the time, the plaintiff contended that of … 1,500 (Kodi) Add-ons, there is a curated list of 22 Add-ons,
almost all of which are infringing Add-ons
Soon afterward, also in June, a search and seizure was conducted which required no advance notice, and an interim injunction and restraining order was issued to the defendant, to stop operations and discontinue app development. At about the same time, US satellite operator DISH Network also sued TV Addons (and another pirate operator, ZemTV)
A few weeks later, another judge dismissed the search and seizure and the injunction Quoted from “Order with Reasons,” June 29 2017 by Justice Bell, Federal Court of Canada: “The … Order under review was purposely designed by counsel for the Plaintiffs, as admitted by them, to completely shut down the Defendant’s operations. … I am of the view that its true purpose was to destroy the livelihood of the Defendant, deny him the financial resources to finance a defence to the claim made against him, and to provide an opportunity for discovery of the Defendant in circumstances where none of the procedural safeguards of our civil justice system could be engaged.”
A 2018 appeal by the plaintiffs overturned that reasoning and the case continued.
In addition to the C$25 million payment to the plaintiffs, the court also issued a permanent injunction against the defendant, Adam Lackman, from continued software development or distribution (specifically, of any Kodi Add-ons, a software app called FreeTelly, or a tool called Indigo), from operating any web sites that provide ‘similar services,’ or from enabling other parties to continue doing so in his place. Two infringing Web sites were named in the judgment: tvaddons.ag and offshoregit.com.
The judgment also authorizes the “bailiffs and independent supervising solicitor, with the assistance of computer forensic experts, to transfer to the Plaintiffs custody of the evidence copied in the context of the execution of the interim order dated June 9, 2017 (e.g. the search and seizure), and of the login credentials, accounts, domains, subdomains and servers transferred in the context of the execution of the interim order.”