YouTuber and infamous US pirate Bill Omar Carrasquillo (aka ‘Omi in a Hellcat’) pleaded guilty to piracy charges in a US Court. Along with two other individuals, he had been arrested by the FBI in September 2021 and indicted on 62 counts of copyright infringement, tax evasion and fraud.
The Philadelphia Enquirer newspaper reported that after watching a documentary about the amount of effor that went into making a Pixar film, he had a revelation: “Think about all the money [they’re] investing [and] all the people running back and forth. Imagine what a copyright holder has to go through,” he said. “Toward the beginning, I felt like what I did wasn’t illegal, but the more I sit back and dwell on it, I was feeding myself bulls—.”
Between 2016 through 2019, the piracy operation reportedly made $34 million.
Read further reporting in The Philadelphia Inquirer (pause your ad blocker)
The case is filed with the US District Court of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, as Case No. 2:21-cr-00367, “United States of America v. Bill Omar Carrasquillo, Jesse Gonzales, Michael Barone.” Current plea documents were unavailable online at the time of this writing.
Why it matters
Comcast, DirecTV, Charter Communications, Verizon, Frontier Communications were all named as video content suppliers to Carrasquillo and his partners, who circumvented their access controls and distributed the content without license for private financial gain, using fradulent devices – and committing wire fraud; all in violation of multiple sections of US Code.
According to The Enquirer, Carrasquillo said “It just sucks. It sucks to lose my house, to lose properties, money, all my cars, my jewelry. It’s an embarrassment.”