Operation Animes Part 2: Another 36 anime piracy sites shut by Brazil Operation 404

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In February, Brazil’s Ministry of Justice and Public Safety announced Operation Animes, an initiative launched by Minas Gerais civil police against piracy of the Japanese art form, in collaboration with the Content Overseas Distribution Association (CODA) and representatives of several government agencies of Japan.  CODA members hold rights to Japanese content.  It was an offshoot of Brazil’s ongoing anti-piracy operation, Operation 404

From February to March 2023, several malicious piracy sites of Japanese anime in Brazil, including “goyabu.com” and “animeyabu.com,” were shut down after being identified by CODA members. These pirate sites were publishing Japanese anime with subtitles in Brazilian Portuguese, without the proper authorization from the rights holders.

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On April 20, CODA announced the closure of 36 Japanese anime pirate sites as a result of Operation 404, as diagrammed below. The sites announced here were not for Japanese but for local viewers in Brazil.

36 illegal sites were shut down between February and March 2023. Image source: CODA

Coinciding with the period of these site closures, the search popularity of legitimate service site names reached its maximum value from February 26 to March 4, 2023, according to Google Trend, as cited by CODA. Several Brazilian social networking sites pointed to a trend toward the use of legitimate content as the pirate sites disappeared.

To date, CODA had filed criminal complaints by its members and criminal referrals from CODA against Japanese pirate sites operating overseas, such as “Anitube” in Brazil and “B9GOOD” in China.

This is the first time that CODA members have brought criminal  referral against a pirate site that specializes in “For Overseas” sites, and this is the first time that such a site has been exposed.

Further reading

36 Japanese anime pirated sites closed due to Brazil’s Operation Animes all-out crackdown. Article. April 20, 2023, CODA

Brazil: Spin-off of Operation 404 takes down anime pirate Web sites in coordinated strike. Article. February 23, 2023. Piracy Monitor

Why it matters

“With the advancement of digital networks and the increasing sophistication of mobile information terminals, the problem of piracy on the Internet is becoming more serious,” according to CODA.  Collaboration between Japan and Brazil was a factor in success: “It is also not easy to research information on sites that appear in Portuguese within Brazil,” said CODA.

It is difficult for legitimate distributors in the Latin American region who are doing business with legitimate licensed Japanese content to succeed in legitimate business in a situation where pirate sites are prevalent, CODA said.

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