Denmark: Seventh sentencing ends long-running Asgaard file sharing case

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Denmark’s National Unit for Special Crime (NSK), through a confession case in the Court in Horsens, sentenced a 48-year-old man from East Jutland to a suspended prison sentence of 60 days for copyright infringement.  He was the seventh and final individual in the group that operated Asgaard (, an illegal file-sharing service.

From July to September 2019, Asgaard distributed at least 15,000 copyrighted films, TV series programs, books and Danish news articles.  At its peak, it had a base of 23,000 users.  The same group also operated Nordicbits (, another illegal file-sharing service from January to April of that year.

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In 2020, the Danish Rights Alliance reported the operators of Asgaard to NSK, the National Special Crime Unit of the Danish national police (SØIK, the State Prosecutor for Special Crime at that time).  The individuals ranged from 35 to 55 years of age.

This led to the arrest and conviction and detention of the main mastermind that December, and the voluntary shut-down of Asgaard soon thereafter.  Over the period that started in June 2021 and ending in April 2024, all seven members of the group were brought to trial and sentenced.

They had to go somewhere

The autumn 2020 shutdown of NordicBits and another file-sharing service called DanishBits led to a spike in visitors to Asgaard, which by November 2020 had become the largest remaining Danish pirate service, receiving 1.5 million visits that month.

Another Danish file sharing service called ShareUniversity had also shut down that month, which also contributed to the traffic to Asgaard.

About NSK

The National Unit for Special Crime (NSK) handles complex and serious cases of financial crime, organized crime and cybercrime.  Its investigations and prosecutions are targeted at cases that include organized money laundering, organized tax evasion, fraud, gang crime as well as organized drug crime and arms smuggling. In addition, NSK supports the entire Danish police with specialized expertise within, among other things, forensics, IT investigation and analysis and intelligence work.

Further reading

Sentence for the seventh mastermind puts an end to the Asgaard case complex.  Press release. April 4, 2024. Danish Rights Alliance (RettighedsAlliancen)

Last case in file-sharing complex ended with prison sentence. Press release. April 3, 2024. NSK (National Unit for Special Crime, Danish National Police

Denmark: Last two pirate services within the country have shut down. Article. January 5, 2021. Piracy Monitor.

Why it matters

“(This verdict) ends the proceedings against the founders and administrators behind one of the largest illegal file sharing services we have had in Denmark,” said Hans Bohn Sørensen, Prosecutor at NSK. “The service gave users illegal access to a massive amount of copyrighted material. When you illegally download copyrighted material, the creators are cheated of their rightful income and it undermines the economics behind the production,” he said.

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