The private tracker EliteBits was raided on Friday. The site admin had a visit at his home by a court official accompanied by staff from a law firm who work for an anti-piracy group. They allegedly traced him via the bank account used to accept donations from members.
The administrator of the private EliteBits BitTorrent tracker has been explaining how he received some unwelcome visitors last week.
Known by his nickname ‘Laeborg’, the Denmark-based admin had a knock on his front door at 7:00am on Friday. There he was confronted by a man from the enforcement court, accompanied by three men from Johan Schlüter Advokatfirma, a law firm that works with Danish anti-piracy group, Antipiratgruppen.
After producing screenshots from EliteBits, information on the bank account used to collect site donations and a warrant, they explained that they had come to secure evidence to show Laeborg was involved in the illegal distribution of copyright works.
The man from the enforcement court contacted lawyer Benny Thomson to represent Laeborg, who was told not to use his phone on concerns he could use it to destroy evidence.
“The collection of evidence started when they asked me to turn on my computer which I did,” Laeborg explains. “They asked me to go to elitebits.org where they took screenshots of my profile and screenshots of the statusbar that says: “Welcome, Laeborg (Owner).”
They went on to take screenshots of all the staff profiles, the Top 10 downloaders, Top 50 uploaders and various other lists, including uploaded torrents.
A list of donors who contributed via bank transfer was discovered and screenshots of all their profiles were taken. Laeborg was informed that he had been traced via the bank account used to accept these donations from site members.
After taking screenshots of hashes and NFOs linked to a pair of torrent files, Laeborg was asked for the user database. He explained that he couldn’t provide it and they would need to speak to host Netdirekt.
Various “non-legal” CDs and DVDs were seized from Laeborg’s office for destruction, with an assurance that the contents wouldn’t be examined. The evidence was copied to a USB drive and the group left.
“My lawyer stayed and we talked the whole thing through,” Laeborg recalls. “I told him the basic concepts about the site. He says that they won’t have enough evidence to make me pay for the all the stuff shared, but it is possible that they will take down EliteBits.org.”