Jury orders music swapper to pay $2.4 million

Nancy Gohring
22 June, 2009
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A woman who won a retrial after a $US220,000 ($A260,000) verdict against her for sharing music files has now been ordered to pay $US1.92 million ($A2.4 million) by a jury in the US state of Minnesota.

In 2007, when she lost the original suit, Jammie Thomas-Rasset was one of the first people to receive a guilty verdict in a case backed by the Recording Industry Association of America, which has filed more than 20,000 lawsuits against people in a bid to stop online music trading and copyright infringement.

On Thursday, a jury ordered her to pay $US80,000 ($A96,000) for each of the 24 songs she is accused of illegally trading over the Kazaa Internet service. The jury could have ordered her to pay between $US750 ($A900) and $US150,000 ($A187,500) per song.

In a statement, the RIAA said it was pleased that the jury found the defendant liable and that it continues to be willing to settle the case.

Thomas’ case has been closely followed, in part because she was a single parent of two children and did not appear to be trading massive volumes of music.

After her case went to court, the recording industry late last year said it would no longer pursue individuals who trade in small numbers of songs. Instead it pledged to first notify ISPs of people who trade large volumes of songs and ask for the ISPs’ help in shutting down the activity.

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