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FTC Disarms P2P Pirate Captain

The FTC has settled a case against a company that was inducing illegal video and audio downloads, creating a band of possibly unsuspecting digital content pirates.

The operator of has agreed not to misrepresent his service and to refund $15,000 to 611 customers who signed up for his service, which sought to mimic legal subscription services.

According to the complaint, Cashier Myricks charged $24.95 for a membership, which actually got the customer a tutorial on the use of free p2p file-sharing software and claimed that downloads of video and audio files, including movies and songs, were 100% legal. They weren't.

As part of the settlement, he must disclose the civil and criminal liability of downloading copyrighted material without permission.

The FTC filed suit against Myricks in September 2005 in federal court, which had issued a temporary injunction against the claims. The agreement with Myricks settles that case.