This morning news is coming in which indicates that very significant raids against illicit file-sharing are taking place in locations across Europe.
Police in up to 14 European countries are said to be involved in an operation, said to be in the planning for two years, targeting the Warez Scene, the network of individuals and servers at the top of the so-called ‘Piracy Pyramid’.
Details are scarce at the moment, but it is believed that at the behest of Belgian authorities, raids have gone ahead in The Netherlands, Belgium, Norway, Germany, Great Britain, Czech Republic, Hungary and Sweden.
Not unusually, Sweden appears to have borne the brunt of the activity with a total of seven locations raided including Stockholm, Malmö, Umeå, Eskilstuna and Solna.
Armed with IP addresses, this morning police officers turned up at the Solna premises of PRQ, the company that in part hosts WikiLeaks.There is no suggestion that the controversial whistle-blowing site is connected to the operation.
“At 9:00 this morning, five policemen were here,” explained PRQ’s Mikael Viberg. “They were interested in who were using two IP addresses from 2009 and onwards. We have no records of our clients but we’re handing over the e-mail addresses for those behind the IPs. However, it’s rare that our clients have mail addresses that are traceable.”
This is a breaking news story and will be updated.
Update: Swedish Prosecutor Frederick Ingblad told Swedish news outlet Expressen.se, “I can confirm that [this operation] is not about Wikileaks.”
Update 2: Thus far, four people are said to be being questioned on suspicion of breaching copyright law. Servers and computers have been seized in Sweden.
Update 3:Police raided the Umeå University.