Two brothers were sentenced today in federal court to 30 months and three years in prison for selling massive amounts of pirated computer software.
After receiving complaints from software copyright holders about a website, an undercover FBI agent made a number of purchases of business and utility software. After further investigation, an array of related websites was discovered.
As a result, Maurice A. Robberson was sentenced to three years in prison and ordered to pay $855,917 in restitution while his brother Thomas K. Robberson, was sentenced to 30 months in prison and ordered to pay $151,488 in restitution. Maurice Robberson pled guilty to conspiracy and felony copyright infringement, while his brother Thomas Robberson pled guilty to a single count of felony copyright infringement.
Thomas Robberson grossed more than $150,000 selling software with a retail value of nearly $1 million. Maurice Robberson grossed more than $855,000 selling software with a retail value of nearly $5.6 million. Both the Robbersons have agreed to forfeit all their proceeds from these illegal businesses.
Two other individuals who conspired with Maurice Robberson to commit copyright infringement have previously been sentenced. Danny Ferrer was sentenced to 72 months in prison for selling more than $4 million in pirated software with a retail value of nearly $20 million. Alton Lee Grooms, who helped initiate some of the illegal businesses and profited more than $150,000 from them, was sentenced to one year and one day in prison, after he cooperated with the government’s investigation.
From late 2002 through October 2005, these individuals ran businesses that sold counterfeit software from companies such as Adobe, Autodesk and Macromedia at discount prices. These counterfeit items were manufactured by members of the conspiracy and included labels that featured trademarks and service marks of the legitimate software companies.