FROM:
Karyn Sinunu, Chief Assistant District Attorney

CONTACT PERSON:
James B. Sibley, Project Director
REACT Task Force
(408) 792-2823 / (Cell) (408) 590-7008

For release on October 6, 2005

"OPERATION REMASTER" RAIDS BEGIN

At 6:00 this morning, as part of a two-year undercover investigation by Rapid Enforcement Allied Computer Team (REACT) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, over 100 officers and agents from federal, state and local agencies simultaneously executed search and arrest warrants throughout the Bay Area and Austin, Texas.  The raids targeted businesses and individuals involved in the large-scale illegal replication and distribution of pirated CDs and DVDs. The eight locations searched include commercial mastering, replicating, packaging, and storage facilities in Hayward, Belmont, San Jose, and Austin, Texas as well as a residence/home office in Oakland. The target businesses have a combined capacity to produce, package and ship more than 12 million discs annually, with a street value in excess of 120 million dollars.

Arrested was YAOBIN ZHAI, 33, of Fremont, the co-owner of Magic Media and BDG Publishing in Hayward.  Also arrested were YE TENG WEN, aka Michael Wen, 29, of Union City and HAO HO, aka Kevin He, 30, of Union City the co-owners of Media Art Technology in Hayward and Union City.  All were arrested on federal warrants alleging violations of 18 U.S.C. section 2319 (Criminal Copyright Infringement), and 18 U.S.C. section 71 (Conspiracy to Commit Criminal Copyright Infringement). They appeared for arraignment today at 1:00 before U.S. Magistrate Judge Howard R. Lloyd. The maximum penalties under 18 U.S. 2319, and 18 U.S. 371 are 5 years imprisonment and a $250,000 fine.  The case will be prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney for the Northern district.

In conjunction with the "Operation ReMaster" raids, agents from the Sacramento Valley High Tech Task Force and Secret Service executed search warrants on wholesale distribution centers in Stockton and San Jose in a parallel investigation dubbed "Operation Buccaneer." These raids were coordinated between the two task forces as part of the statewide effort to combat piracy.  These searches and arrests are the first based on the extensive undercover investigation additional searches, arrests, and indictments are pending.

Participating in the raids were agents from the REACT, and FBI, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and Secret Service with additional assistance from Hayward Police Department, Union City Police Department, San Francisco Police Department, Fremont Police Department, San Jose Police Department, Santa Clara Police Department, Belmont Police Department, and Oakland Police Department. The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), and Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) provided technical support during the investigation and raids.

The on-going investigation has identified targets in the San Francisco Bay Area, Los Angeles and other parts of the United States.  Due to the number of subjects and businesses involved, the searches and arrests will be conducted in phases.  Companies and/or individuals involved in piracy who would like to discuss early resolution and cooperation in this investigation, and anyone having knowledge of a business or individual involved in large-scale piracy of movies, music, software and games are urged to contact the REACT Task Force at (408) 494-7165 or [email protected].

Administered by the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office, REACT is one of five California multi-jurisdictional, multi-agency high technology crime task forces operating under grants from the California Office of Emergency Services.

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