Hong Kong Customs officers have seized 225 photocopies of reference books in an operation against illicit photocopying activities of copyright works, the Customs' Intellectual Property Investigation Bureau said on Wednesday.
The officers raided three photocopying shops in Tseung Kwan O, one in Sai Wan Ho, one in Tin Shui Wai and a storage center at a residential premises in Sai Wan Ho during the two-day operation which was launched on Sept. 25.
According to the Customs, seven photocopiers and three book- binding machines and about 225 photocopies of university and A- Level reference books and primary school level exercise books were seized. The total seizure was worth about 90,000 HK dollars (US$11,538).
Besides, customs officers arrested four men, aged between 22 and 50, and three women, aged between 33 and 52.
The Customs appealed to photocopying shops not to take advantage of the start of the school semester to engage in illicit photocopying business, or they would face prosecution.
Under the Copyright Ordinance, it is an offense for a person to possess, for the purpose of or in the course of a profit-making copying service business, an infringing copy of a copyright work as published in a book, magazine or periodical. The maximum penalty is a fine of 50,000 HK dollars per infringing copy and four years' imprisonment.
(Xinhua News Agency September 28, 2006)