More than 200,000 pirated DVDs seized from black market

Many of the 200,000 illegal DVDs seized from black-market traders contained pornographic material that would be harmful to children if it fell into their hands, police said.
Many of the 200,000 illegal DVDs seized from black-market traders contained pornographic material that would be harmful to children if it fell into their hands, police said.
Image: Supplied

More than 200,000 pirated DVDs worth more than R2m were seized from unlawful distributors and street vendors and destroyed in Johannesburg on Friday.

According to police, many of the DVDs seized from black-market traders contained pornographic material and were mainly being sold next to taxi ranks. 

There was a risk of exposing children to harmful content, said police spokesperson Col Lungelo Dlamini. "The destruction process is conducted to prevent the seized material from finding their way back to the black market," he said.

Dr Maria Matebang, acting CEO of the Film and Publication Board (FPB), said removing illegal materials from the streets would go a long way towards preserving the integrity of the local film industry. 

"Clamping down on illicit trade contributes to a value chain of criminality, and simultaneously the act of destruction of illicit material supports local content creators by ensuring that the potential economic outflow of their work is not lost to piracy," she said. 

Watching over the destruction process, Gauteng provincial police commissioner Lt-Gen Elias Mawela said that law-enforcement agencies would continue to root out the black-market trade.

"The police and other law enforcement agencies will continue to clean up the streets of Gauteng and raid all the distribution outlets operating at the taxi ranks, street vendors and internet cafés," he said.


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