First it was plane spotting, then it was playing with a GameBoy on the beach – now there’s something else unwary tourists can get thrown into jail for in Greece: buying pirated CDs.
A tourist was arrested last week as he bought two counterfeit CDs from a vendor in Athens, and to give everyone a reminder that such activities are illegal, he earned himself a three month sentence. It’s not recorded what happened to the guy who sold him the CDs, though Greek courts have prosecuted about 1000 illegal sellers in the past.
IFPI spokesman Ion Stamboulis said in a statement: “This is not a symbolic measure. We are determined to prosecute the buyers and we have the support of the authorities.”
Clamping down on the vendors has proven problematic in the past as they have fairly hefty underworld connections, so perhaps the authorities are looking for an easier way to tackle the issue.
The surge in prosecutions is no doubt aimed that trying to fix Greece’s terrible piracy record (the worst in Western Europe) before the start of the 2004 Olympics.