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Have you seen “Scared Straight?” Federal prison sucks. It’s supposed to suck; you don’t want to make life easy for mobsters and murderers like Al Capone, The Son of Sam, “Machine Gun” Kelly, Charles Manson, Jeffrey Dahmer and The Green River Killer when you send them to the clink to keep them from further harming the public. One unlucky pirate is going to find out firsthand just how crappy prison is, after a judge ordered 49 year old Gilberto Sanchez to a year in the federal slam for uploading X-Men: Wolverine to MegaUpload before the film's release.
According to Reuters, U.S. District Judge Margaret M. Morrow called Sanchez’s upload – which occurred a month prior to the movie hitting the theaters – “very serious.” So serious, apparently, that Sanchez deserves to spend the next 12 months with violent criminals and drug runners. Maybe it was the fact that he posted links to the file on two other websites that made his copyright infringement so egregious? After his prison term is up, he still has to spend another year under “supervised release” with severe limitations on his computer use.
Copyright infringement is bad. Uploading movies is bad. But is it bad enough to warrant a federal prison sentence?