The last remaining co-founder of NinjaVideo.net pleaded guilty Thursday in federal court in Virginia. The site facilitated illegal downloads of movies and TV shows and took in $505,000 in revenue from ads and donations from users. Justin A. Dedemko, 28, of Brooklyn, N.Y., pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Anthony J. Trenga in the Alexandria Division of the Eastern District of Virginia. Dedemko’s fellow co-founders Matthew David Howard Smith and Hana Amal Beshara pleaded guilty separately to conspiracy and criminal copyright infringement in September. Dedemko was responsible for locating infringing content on the Internet and uploading it to servers used by the NinjaVideo.net website, some of which were located in the Eastern District of Virginia. Dedemko subsequently focused on marketing and advertising, which resulted in the $505,000 in income. Dedemko admitted he personally received $58,004 and agreed to pay restitution. Sentencing is set for February 24, 2012. He faces a maximum of five years.
In addition to Smith and Beshara, Joshua David Evans, who served as one of NinjaVideo’s main uploaders, pleaded guilty last week to conspiracy and criminal copyright infringement. Jeremy Lynn Andrew, who served as head of security for NinjaVideo.net, also pleaded guilty to conspiracy last week. An arrest warrant has been issued for the the final indicted co-conspirator, Zoi Mertzanis of Greece, who also allegedly served as one of the website’s main uploaders. NinjaVideo was seized during the first phase of “Operation In Our Sites,” a sustained law enforcement initiative targeting counterfeiting and piracy over the Internet.
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