Page last updated at 11:30 GMT, Wednesday, 3 December 2008

London 'to be fake-free' by 2012

Fake CDs - generic
An estimated 486m was lost to DVD piracy in the UK last year

A new anti-piracy campaign has promised to make London a "fake-free zone" by the time the city hosts the 2012 Games.

The campaign, which involves the Metropolitan Police, the Motion Picture Association of America and the UK Film Council, will ensure laws are enforced.

In the first two weeks of the pilot scheme 39 arrests were made and 90,250 fake DVDs were seized across London.

Campaigners said piracy cost the film and television industries 486m in 2007 and may impact on creative talent.

The campaign aims to make local government, businesses, traders and the wider community aware of the seriousness and impact of piracy on the industry.

'Impact film quality'

Higher Education and Intellectual Property Minister David Lammy backed the initiative on Wednesday.

Mr Lammy said: "Good law is great but enforced law is better.

"The Fake-Free London campaign sends a clear message that we are all serious about tackling this problem."

Adrian Wootton, head of Film London, the agency promoting filming in the city, said: "The general public need to know that piracy has a devastating loss to the UK film and TV industry.

"This not only affects the livelihoods of tens of thousands of people who work in the UK film industry but may start to impact on the creativity and quality of films themselves."

During the first two weeks of the pilot project police officers carried out 82 raids and in the boroughs of Tower Hamlets, Brent, Harrow, and Lewisham.

About 90,250 DVDs were seized along with credit cards and a computer.

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