The Monday court found the principal village school guilty of using pirated Microsoft software and ordered him to pay a fine of about $ 195 in the case, which was launched in the Russian media as a battle between a humble educator and an international company.
The trial of Alexander Ponosov, who is accused of violating intellectual property rights by using classroom computers with pirated versions of Windows operating system and Microsoft Office software installed, has attracted great attention.
Russian officials often argue that foreign governments, including the U.S., are meddling in the internal affairs of Russia, and Russian media have described the case as a Western society that takes its power to influence a man – in this case, a director who is also professor of history and earns $ 360 a month.
Microsoft, however, has repeatedly said it has nothing to do with the charges that were filed by prosecutors in the Russian Ural Mountains region, where the school Ponosov.
The case “was initiated by Russian authorities under Russian law,” the company said in an emailed statement after the verdict. “Microsoft has opened or plans to take any action against Mr. Ponosov”.
Natalya says Kurdoyakova Fiscal televised address Ponosov knew he was breaking the law “and illegally used these programs in computer classes.”
Ponosov has always maintained his innocence, claiming that the school computers with software already installed.
“I had no idea that was not approved,” Ponosov The Associated Press by telephone. He said he planned to file an appeal.
“Prosecutors have made many mistakes from the time they checked the computers,” he said.
Ponosov was found guilty of causing damage to $ 10 000 to the company, RIA-Novosti quoted judge Valentina Tiunov saying.
In February, the district court of the Perm region Vereshchaginsky dismissed the case, saying the actions Ponosov were “insignificant” and presented no danger to society. Both Ponosov and prosecutors would appeal, hoping to force a clear decision, with Ponosov saying he wanted a full acquittal.
In March, the regional court ordered Ponosov to stand trial a second time.
Despite government promises to crack down on rampant piracy in Russia, the country remains the No. 2 producer of pirated software, movies and music, after China.
In April, the Bush administration has put Russia, China and 10 other nations, “Priority Watch List”, which is subject to supplementary supervision, and may eventually lead to economic sanctions if the administration decides to bring the market before that the World Trade Organization.
The appointment was made in an annual report that the administration is obliged to deliver to Congress each year that highlights the problems U.S. companies face the world with piracy. The report states that the United States will be closely monitored to see how Russia fulfills the commitments made in the modernization of copyright protection as part of a US-Russian agreement signed last year, which was considered a milestone in the efforts of Russia to join WTO.