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MPAA, FBI and U.S. Customs Shut Down EliteTorrents

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MPAA, FBI and U.S. Customs Shut Down EliteTorrents

Postby SlyckTom » Wed May 25, 2005 5:11 pm

Earlier reports discussing EliteTorrents.org have been confirmed to be an enforcement action taken by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). This morning, all indications dictated the situation was not an enforcement action, considering the amateurish violation notice coupled with the official word from EliteTorrents’ administration stating they were DNS hacked.

Although the violations notice visually unimpressive, this would turn out to be part of an overall enforcement action by the MPAA, FBI and ICE. When visiting the site, one is confronted with the following notification:

"This Site [EliteTorrents.org] has been permanently shut down by the Federal bureau of Investigation and U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement"

"The individuals involved in the operation and use of Elite Torrents network are under investigation for criminal copyright infringement"

These are very serious words, especially when using the term "...and use..." to imply users may vulnerable to criminal charges. According to the FBI <a href=http://www.fbi.gov/dojpressrel/pressrel05/bittorrent052505.htm target=_blank>press release</a>, 10 search warrants have been issued against leading members of EliteTorrents.org.

"This morning, agents of the FBI and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) executed 10 search warrants across the United States against leading members of a technologically sophisticated P2P network known as Elite Torrents. Employing technology known as BitTorrent, the Elite Torrents network attracted more than 133,000 members and, in the last four months, allegedly facilitated the illegal distribution of more than 17,800 titles-including movies and software-which were downloaded 2.1 million times. "

The press release also explains why the administration of EliteTorrents initially believed this was the result of a DNS hack.

"In addition to executing 10 warrants, federal agents also took control of the main server that coordinated all file-sharing activity on the Elite Torrents network."

In the MPAA's <a href=http://www.mpaa.org/MPAAPress/2005/2005_05_25b.doc target=_blank>press release</a>, the organization was adamant about ridding the Internet of EliteTorrents.org, due to the fact it helped proliferate "Star Wars, Episode III: Revenge of the Sith." Star Wars' prerelease had the MPAA extremely frustrated, and vowed to pursue those distributing the movie. It appears the MPAA made good on that promise.

"Carrying out what is known as Operation D-Elite, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) executed search warrants against prominent members in Elite Torrents’ membership," said Motion Picture Association of America, Inc. (MPAA) President and CEO Dan Glickman. "Elite Torrents was one of the first peer to peer networks to post an illegal copy of Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith before the movie officially opened in theaters last Thursday."

The FBI press release expands on the MPAA's philosophy, "For example, the final entry in the Star Wars series, "Episode III: Revenge of the Sith," was available for downloading on the network more than six hours before it was first shown in theatres. In the next 24 hours, it was downloaded more than 10,000 times."

This situation remains fluid, as the extent of the FBI and U.S. Custom enforcement is unclear. For now, only the administration is looking at criminal charges, however the implied possibility against users remains real.
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Postby DepecheNode » Wed May 25, 2005 5:14 pm

I'm finding it odd that ice.gov and fbi.gov are both resolving to a name server in Australia.

I'll keep looking.
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Postby cjules13 » Wed May 25, 2005 5:14 pm

Let's just hope you weren't part of the ET Star Wars 3 swarm.

I bet they use the newly minted Family Copyright Act of 2005 against those individuals.
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Postby Conny_S » Wed May 25, 2005 5:16 pm

Something big going happen soon...
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Postby flossy22 » Wed May 25, 2005 5:18 pm

Well this is a mess... how much u think it costs to start up a site like that ? and what u need cuz ill do it ?
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Postby gregorio » Wed May 25, 2005 5:24 pm

wow, I didn't see that one coming...
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Postby Skel » Wed May 25, 2005 5:24 pm

I used that site but i hadnt recentaly shame it got shut down... Dumbass FBI and MPAA :evil:
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Postby bmh67wa » Wed May 25, 2005 5:25 pm

IMO this is even worse than Suprnova going down. :(
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Postby DepecheNode » Wed May 25, 2005 5:28 pm

Domains are now NOT resoloving to Austalia.

However, I can ping and trace-route USDOJ.gov (Dept. Of Justice) but not FBI.gov or ICE.gov.

I'm thinking it's either a screw up, or this is one hell of a hoax.

The pages DO look authenic, though... :wink:
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Postby Califax » Wed May 25, 2005 5:28 pm

Oh man, back in the day I used that site all the time. Man did they get things fast. Usually had stuff before vcdquality.com noted the releases. I feel bad for the uploaders and site owners... Oh Man :cry:
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Postby marksman » Wed May 25, 2005 5:30 pm

DepecheNode wrote:Domains are now NOT resoloving to Austalia.

However, I can ping and trace-route USDOJ.gov (Dept. Of Justice) but not FBI.gov or ICE.gov.

I'm thinking it's either a screw up, or this is one hell of a hoax.

The pages DO look authenic, though... :wink:


Well there is also an MPAA press release too...

http://www.mpaa.org/MPAAPress/
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Postby eMbry00s » Wed May 25, 2005 5:33 pm

The sites look authentic, but they're automatically updating all the time. I'm not on .gov sites a lot so I don't know if that's normal behaviour.

Thinking that this is some elaborate huge scam is a weak hope, I'd say blue eyed.

And by the way, Pirate Bay doesn't suck for us Swedes. ;)
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Postby DepecheNode » Wed May 25, 2005 5:34 pm

Yup, they're REAL!

All are resolving through USDOJ website. It threw me off that there's no MX record for ICE (no email possible at the ICE domain).

Out of the blue, eh?
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Postby eMbry00s » Wed May 25, 2005 5:36 pm

So they caught ten guys at the head of ET. What about the Austrian person? I'd like to know where the server was located, and if the "feds" can get at us europeans.
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Postby RunsWithScissors » Wed May 25, 2005 5:38 pm

Wowzers. I was certaintly hoping this was just a hoax, but it's becoming more and more unlikely.
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Postby Banko » Wed May 25, 2005 5:44 pm

So does 10 warrants mean for 10 people only?
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Postby SlyckScratch » Wed May 25, 2005 5:48 pm

Anyone had any luck getting the Elite Torrents video from

http://www.ice.gov/graphics/news/multimedia/clip0035.avi

Its crawling for me, is it worth staying with it?
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Postby DepecheNode » Wed May 25, 2005 5:50 pm

It's illegal for me to tell any of you members of Elite Torrents to destroy your hard-drives. So I won't.

If you were a member, and especially if you were a seeder, call a lawyer NOW.

I'm at 60% Scratch...
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Postby OddballLN » Wed May 25, 2005 5:52 pm

The FBI and ICE (God knows why they are involved! Probably ILLEGALLY) are acting more and more like the KGB and GRU of the Soviet Union, “Your papers, PLEASE!”
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Postby cjules13 » Wed May 25, 2005 5:52 pm

SlyckScratch wrote:Anyone had any luck getting the Elite Torrents video from

http://www.ice.gov/graphics/news/multimedia/clip0035.avi

Its crawling for me, is it worth staying with it?


I snagged it, it just shows how easy it is to grab it from ET and shows the quality of the movie.

Not really worth it but amusing.
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Postby cjules13 » Wed May 25, 2005 5:53 pm

DepecheNode wrote:It's illegal for me to tell any of you members of Elite Torrents to destroy your hard-drives. So I won't.

If you were a member, and especially if you were a seeder, call a lawyer NOW.

I'm at 60% Scratch...


Naaaah, they won't hit all members. It might just stop with the ET admins, and the uploader of Star Wars 3.

At WORST, it would be the 10000 people they observed the the Star Wars 3 swarm.
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Postby fyyrest0rm » Wed May 25, 2005 5:56 pm

cjules13 wrote:
SlyckScratch wrote:Anyone had any luck getting the Elite Torrents video from

http://www.ice.gov/graphics/news/multimedia/clip0035.avi

Its crawling for me, is it worth staying with it?


I snagged it, it just shows how easy it is to grab it from ET and shows the quality of the movie.

Not really worth it but amusing.


Anyone else notice that the Episode III ICE's video shows, is in fact a 3-minute trailer?
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Postby caldis » Wed May 25, 2005 5:59 pm

in case you want the video and the server from ice.gov can't serve you:

http://www.huuhaa.info/clip0035.avi.torrent
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Postby sixruns » Wed May 25, 2005 6:00 pm

Why did they have their server inside the US? To me that's just asking for trouble. "W" passed is law, just in time for Star Wars I might add, so he could start nailing those guys.

Get our servers out of the US of A!!!!!

Now!!!!!!
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Postby Banko » Wed May 25, 2005 6:01 pm

caldis wrote:in case you want the video and the server from ice.gov can't serve you:

http://www.huuhaa.info/clip0035.avi.torrent

Am I the only one that finds that it's a torrent file ironic?
Last edited by Banko on Wed May 25, 2005 6:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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