Joshua David Evans, 34, of North Bend, Washington, and Jeremy Lynn Andrew, 33, of Eugene, Oregon, pleaded guilty Tuesday in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia for their roles at NinjaVideo.net, which provided millions of users with illegal copies of movies, the DOJ said.
Evans pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy and one count of criminal copyright infringement related to his role in the Internet release of "Iron Man 2" before the movie reached U.S. theaters. Andrew pleaded guilty to a single count of conspiracy.
Evans was referred to as the "Head God" of the "uploaders," the site members who were responsible for locating infringing content on the Internet and uploading it to servers used by NinjaVideo.net. Evans also regularly supervised other uploaders based in North America, with more than 10 uploaders involved in the site at times, the DOJ said in a press release.
Andrew was referred to as the "Ninja Head of Security," according to court documents. Andrew was one of the administrators at NinjaVideo.net, served as a moderator at the site's forums and assisted with issues related to the site's servers, the DOJ said.
NinjaVideo.net, which operated from February 2008 until it was shut down by law enforcement in June 2010, allowed visitors to download infringing copies of hundreds of television shows and movies, including some movies still playing in theaters, the DOJ said. Visitors could download much of the infringing content free, but those who paid US$25 obtained access to private forum boards that contained a wider range of infringing material, the agency said.