Chinese police have arrested 14 suspects for links to the pirated-video platform YYeTs.com, which allows millions of users to stream and download pirated copies of movies and TV shows.
The Shanghai municipal public security bureau said on Wednesday that they nabbed the suspects over the piracy case involving more than 16 million yuan (about 2.5 million U.S. dollars), in cooperation with police in Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region and the provinces of Shandong and Hubei.
In September 2020, Shanghai police found that YYeTs.com was providing online streaming and download services of pirated videos on its website and app.
The ensuing police investigation showed that since 2018, the suspects founded several companies and set up servers inside and outside China to develop and operate the website and app of YYeTs.com.
They downloaded videos from foreign pirated-video websites, translated the videos into Chinese and uploaded the subtitled videos to their servers for dissemination, without the authorisation of the copyright owners.
They made illegal profits by charging membership fees and advertising fees, selling portable hard drives storing the pirated videos.
Preliminary investigation showed YYeTs.com, with more than 8 million registered users, has posted over 20,000 copies of videos on its website and app.
The police have taken criminal coercive measures against the suspects, and further investigation is underway.