Elite Torrents shut down by FBI


— 1:00 PM on May 26, 2005

The FBI has shut down Elite Torrents, a torrent site that provided Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith download links hours before the movie was released in theaters. The site's operator will face criminal charges, though none have been filed formally.

Search warrants were served on 10 people in the US and the site's main server now displays a blunt, bright red message from the FBI warning all of the dangers of copyright infringement. The action marked a new step in the Federal war on file sharing, as the site operators are facing criminal charges for running the site, rather than just the possibility of a lawsuit, so it looks like the MPAA has been successful in enlisting the government's help in fighting its legal battles.
In related news, BitTorrent's search engine is now live. The search engine doesn't filter out pirated content, leaving the responsibility of removing copyrighted torrents to the site's operators if they want to escape legal challenges.
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