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La Liga prosecutes over 600 Spanish bars for illegal football streams

Friday 15 March 2019 | 15:20 CET | News
The Spanish Football League (La Liga) has brought its first criminal actions against bars that are illegally broadcasting live games from the country’s top-tier competition. In a statement, La Liga said a total of 600 establishments in the hospitality industry have have been reported for breaches of intellectual property, a crime that it says could result in a minimum of 4 months in prison plus payment of substantial damages. 

The league has a team of 100 inspectors which has carried out over 80,000 visits this season alone to ensure bars are paying the correct public broadcasting fee. It has also controversially used its Android app to identify whether smartphone owners are watching a game at a public venue via an illegal feed. La Liga said some 19,000 illegal streams were detected as well as 60 cases of sub-operators making a profit by selling or facilitating access to its content.

Sports-based packages for the hospitality industry are far higher than consumer packages, costing over EUR 200 a month for broadband access plus rights to air domestic and international football games. Sports rights broker Mediapro owns the public rights to broadcast La Liga games in bars, restaurants and hotels for the current 2018-19 season, having paid EUR 120 million for the signal before closing distribution deals with Telefonica, Vodafone and Orange.




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Categories: Broadcast & Satellite / Internet
Companies: Mediapro / Orange / Telefonica / Vodafone
Countries: Spain
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