By Ogbonna Amadi
The Nigerian Copyright Commission has declared wanted three suspected broadcast piracy barons, namely the Chief Executive Officer of a broadcasting company, Communications Trends Limited (CTL), Mr. Uzo Udemba and his top Management executives, Mr. Chike Okwunakwe and Mr. Wilson Kalada.
The suspects have been on the run following highly coordinated and successful antipiracy raids simultaneously executed on Wednesday, January 27, 2010 on the cable facilities of CTL in six states of the Federation, namely Lagos, Delta, Imo, Edo, Enugu and Rivers states.
Copyright Inspectors impounded equipment and documents adjudged to be devoted to the commission of the crime at the seven CTL business outfits (two of which are based at its Lagos operational headquarters) and arrested their station managers along with some support staff of the company.
The arrested managers who have made useful statements are Mr. Ezeabasim Chisom in charge of CTL office on Sakponba Road, Benin City; Mr. Chibuzor Onyenuforo who mans CTL House at 206/208, Aba Express Way in Port Harcourt; Mr. Samuel Chigbu of CTL office at No. 30, Wetheral Road, Owerri; Mrs. Chris Owaegbu of CTL office at No. 1, Enerren Junction, Warri in Delta State and Mr. Azubuike Echeonwu of CTL office at No. 50, Zik Avenue, Uwani, Enugu.
The Commission swung into action having investigated and established prima facie evidence of broadcast piracy, based on allegations against CTL contained in petitions by Entertainment Highways Ltd, a.k.a. HITV.
The NCC is currently collaborating with the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) in its on-going investigation of the matter with a view to ensuring effective prosecution of the offenders of the nationâ€™s copyright and broadcast laws.