One of the largest sports file-sharing sites has closed following threats of 10-year jail terms from police.
The site, used by a reported 20,000 UK and international seeders offered links to download European football matches, international hockey, Formula 1 races and sports documentaries.
ComputerworldUK understands that the City of London Police had emailed the service a fortnight ago as part of its ongoing Pipcu (Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit) investigations, which secured £2.56 million of the UK’s Intellectual Property Office budget in September.
The email read: “Such activity is an indictable offense under the Serious Crime Act 2007 and is punishable by up to 10 years’ imprisonment (two years for encouraging/assisting communication to the public; and 10 years for encouraging/assisting distribution to the public),”
"Pipcu has the lawful right to pursue action against you and against the thesportstorrentnetwork.co.uk website in order to prevent, detect and disrupt criminal activity," read the warning from PIPCU.
The site creators announced: "We have received legal action against us. Thanks for being around with us for the last few years. Best regards, TSTN crew." before removing the website and deleting their Twitter account.
Pipcu has closed several smaller sports sites including nuthob.eu and boxingguru.co.uk. Their funds are due to run out next year and it has not yet been announced whether the file-sharing unit will become permanent.
The unit has created a database of file-sharing websites and published it to advertising businesses in a bid to cut off offending site’s revenue.