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Eight men charged in 'Star Wars: Episode III' piracy investigation

UPI News Service, 09/28/2005 

Eight California men have pleaded guilty to stealing and distributing "Star Wars: Episode III -- Revenge of the Sith" before it opened in theaters.

The U.S. Attorney for the Central District of California also announced charges Tuesday against another man who illegally distributed an Academy Award screening version of "Million Dollar Baby," the Motion Picture Association of America announced in a news release.

The MPAA said an employee at a post-production facility stole the "Star Wars" copy and leant it to a friend -- and the copy changed hands seven times in all before it was put on an Internet site the day before the movie opened.

"The charges handed down today by the U.S. Attorney prove that forensic markings on screeners and early copies of movies are doing their job in locating movie pirates," MPAA Chairman and CEO Dan Glickman said in the release.

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Copyright 2005 by United Press International

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