By Emmanuel Elebeke
A forty feet container, loaded with 612,000 copies of suspected pirated DVDs and 45,900 units of DVD jackets estimated at N300 million has been confiscated by operatives of Nigerian Copyright Commission, NCC and Nigeria Customs Service, NCS at the Apapa Seaport, Lagos.
A report by the Ports Monitoring Officer of NCC, Mr. Joe Ojika, which disclosed this, stated that the container marked MRKU4366990 was intercepted on the verge of leaving the port upon a tip-off to the Customs by officers of the Commission.
The report indicated that a vehicle with Registration No. XU 814 BDG which freighted the container was turned back at the exit gate of the port for antipiracy inspection at the Enforcement Department of the NCS. “A joint inspection team made up of officers of the Nigeria Customs Service drawn from its various units and the NCC officers conducted inspection on the container on 7th March 2013,” it stated.
According to the report, “The inspection revealed that the container contains 600 cartons with each carton containing 1,020 copies (612,000 copies in all) of cinematographic DVDs and 45,900 units of empty jackets. The estimated market value of the contents of the container is put at about N300 million.” It stated that investigation was ongoing, adding that the container would soon be handed over to the Commission by the Customs.
It will be recalled that last year, the Commission, in collaboration with Nigeria Customs Service, recorded an unprecedented confiscation of a total of 13 containers of 3.6 billion units of pirated products, valued at N4.75 billion at different seaports in the country.
Whereas, 11 of the containers were stacked with pirated books of Nigerian and foreign authors, the remaining two were loaded with pirated musical and film works of local and foreign titles. This seizure brings to 14 the total number of containers of suspected pirated copyright works impounded so far at a cumulative total estimated cost of N5.05 billion.