Spain’s Supreme Court declared that Igor Seoane Miñan, owner of Rojadirecta, a sports piracy site, is personally liable for breaching intellectual property rights of Spain’s LaLiga soccer league and Grup Mediapro, one of LaLiga’s major distributors.
Rojadirecta had been providing access to illegal content since 2010, in breach of intellectual property rights via a series of links that allowed users to watch football matches live. Although access to the web for users was free, Seoane Miñan received millions in revenue by linking to other websites and from selling advertising on these sites.
According to a statement by Grup Mediapro, the media giant had filed a libel suit against the Rojadirecta website in 2015 for the unauthorized distribution of content, citing that a company called Puerto 80 and Seoane Miñan – its sole director – were liable for the website.
Both the Puerto 80 and Seoane Miñan were initially condemned, but Seoane Miñon successfully appealed this decision before a Spanish Provincial Court of A Coruña.
This October 2022 declaration corrects a 2018 court ruling that had disassociated Seoane Miñon from Rojadirecta and therefore had shielded him from liability.
Now that the Supreme Court has rectified this decision, GRUP MEDIAPRO has filed a suit claiming damages against Puerto 80 and from Seoane Miñan, in the amount of €354 million.
Press release: New victory against piracy in football in Spain, Grup Mediapro, Nov. 10, 2022
The Supreme Court agrees with Mediapro and unmasks the Rojadirecta network, IUSPORT, Nov 4, 2022 (Auto-translated from Spanish to English by Google Translate)
Why it matters
This proceedings are part of the actions taken by GRUP MEDIAPRO and LaLiga to eradicate piracy in football in Spain. GRUP MEDIAPRO and LaLiga will continue their fight against audiovisual piracy and fraudulent and irregular consumption of content protected by intellectual property rights.