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Written Statement of Kevin J. O'Connor, Chairman of the Department of Justice Task Force on Intellectual Property, at the Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing on Intellectual Property Enforcement
Date:11/7/2007

ated and organized criminal networks, many of which are turning to advanced communications technologies to hide their tracks from law enforcement.

The Attorney General recently forwarded to Congress a comprehensive intellectual property protection package, the Intellectual Property Protection Act of 2007, to better equip U.S. law enforcement with the tools necessary to protect intellectual property rights and provide real deterrence against criminals who are looking for unjust enrichment on the backs of hardworking Americans. Among other things, this bill would:

Increase the maximum penalty for counterfeiting offenses from 10 years to 20 years imprisonment where the defendant knowingly or recklessly causes or attempts to cause serious bodily injury, and increase the maximum penalty to life imprisonment where the defendant knowingly or recklessly causes or attempts to cause death;

-- Provide stronger penalties for repeat-offenders of the copyright laws;

-- Implement broad forfeiture reforms to ensure the ability to forfeit property derived from or used in the commission of criminal intellectual property offenses;

-- Strengthen restitution provisions for certain intellectual property crimes (e.g., criminal copyright and DMCA offenses); and

-- Ensure that the exportation and transshipment of pirated goods through the United States is subject to criminal penalties, just as the exportation of counterfeit goods is now subject to criminal penalties.

-- Criminalize the attempt to commit copyright infringement, such as in a situation where a warehouse of pirated optical discs is seized before any sales are made;

-- Clarify that registration of copyright is not a prerequisite to criminal prosecution.

In light of the sophisticated communications technologies criminal piracy and counterfeiting organizations are using to communicate about and plan their crimes, the IPPA would also amend the wiretap statute to include
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SOURCE U.S. Department of Justice
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