Supreme Court Confirms No U.S. Civil Jurisdiction for Alleged Foreign-Based Piracy

WASHINGTON — In a case that sets a concerning precedent for content producers worried about online piracy, the U.S. Supreme Court refused yesterday to take up an adult content copyright holder’s appeal to a lower court decision that U.S. courts have no jurisdiction over foreign copyright infringers.

The case — AMA Multimedia LLC v. Wanat, case number 20-1430 — was originally filed in Nevada by adult company AMA Multimedia against a Polish national who is the operator of allegedly infringing site ePorner.

In the last instance of that civil suit in August 2020, a 9th Circuit panel of three judges decided 2-1 to deny AMA standing to sue Marcin Wanat, the Polish owner of ePorner, in the U.S.

Two of the three appeals judges, Ryan Nelson and Sandra Okuta, agreed that federal courts lack personal jurisdiction over Wanat (Opinion No. 1).

The third judge, Ronald Gould, dissented (Opinion No. 2).

But, as Law.com pointed out at the time, “the Ninth Circuit’s agreement in AMA Multimedia v. Wanat ended there. Nelson wrote in a separate concurrence to his own opinion that ‘perhaps the door remains slightly open’ for U.S. District Judge Roslyn Silver of the District of Arizona to consider the effect of intervening law — Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation in particular — that was enacted during the pendency of the appeal” (Opinion No. 3).

Okuta disagreed with Nelson, stating that for her the appeals ruling “means this case is over” and Judge Silver “now has the authority to do only one thing,” that is “remove the case from her docket” (Opinion No. 4)

According to Law 360, “the panel majority in August 2020 held that the operator, Marcin Wanat, did not purposefully direct his conduct to the U.S., and AMA argued in its certiorari petition [to the Supreme Court] that the ruling conflicts with holding of other circuits.”

AMA Multimedia is the operator of more than 20 adult membership sites, including Passion-HD.com, Tiny4K.com and PornPros.com. The company has been waging legal battles against several sites — most prominently Porn.com — which they claim have pirated their content.

In 2015, AMA initiated the lawsuit that resulted in yesterday’s appeals decision. Originally filed against the unknown owners of ePorner, AMA obtained discovery revealing that Polish national Marcin Wanat operated the allegedly infringing site.


Article Source : xbiz.com – XBIZ is the leading source for adult industry news.

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