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US College Student Arrested for Console Modding

Matthew Lloyd Crippen, a Cal State Fullerton student in the United States, was arrested last Monday on charges that he modified Microsoft Xbox, Sony PlayStation, Nintendo Wii, and other video game consoles for profit. Modifying consoles in the US is illegal and is in violation of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.

Last May, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents executed a federal search warrant at Crippen's home, where they seized more than a dozen Microsoft, Nintendo and Sony video game consoles.

"Playing with games in this way is not a game -- it is criminal," said Robert Schoch, special agent in charge of the ICE investigations office in Los Angeles.

"Piracy, counterfeiting and other intellectual property rights violations not only cost U.S. businesses jobs and billions of dollars a year in lost revenue, they can also pose significant health and safety risks to consumers," he said.

There are no laws in the Philippines that prohibit the modification of game consoles. In fact, most video game console vendors sell consoles that are already modded. The only law we have is the copyright act which prohibits the selling of pirated games. Pirated games cost around Php80-Php150 or about US$1.67 - US$3.12 each.

(Via NBC Los Angeles)

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