Explanatory Notes

Digital Economy Act 2010

2010 CHAPTER 24

8 April 2010

Commentary on Sections

Topic 10: Copyright and performers’ property rights: penalties

Section 42: Increase of penalties relating to infringing articles or illicit recordings

203.The Gowers Review of intellectual property(13) recommended that the penalties under section 107 of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 (“the 1988 Act”) for online copyright infringement should be matched with those that apply for physical infringement, by increasing the maximum prison sentence. Section 107 of the 1988 Act currently restricts fines awarded on summary conviction for criminal infringement of copyright under section 107(4)(a) and 107(4A)(a) to the statutory maximum, which is £5,000 in England and Wales and £10,000 in Scotland. The section increases the maximum fine that may be imposed for these offences to £50,000. It also increases the maximum fine on summary conviction for making, importing, distributing or making available an illicit recording under section 198(5) or 198(5A) from the statutory maximum to £50,000.


Gowers review of Intellectual Property, 6 December 2006