The Lagos State Film and Videos Censors Board (LSFVCB) on Tuesday said that 30 traders had been arrested in clampdown on sellers of pirated films in the state.
The Executive Secretary of the board, Mr Dele Balogun, said in a statement that the traders were arrested after a week-long raid on pirated films outlets in eight local governments areas across the state.
He said that between Dec. 3 and Dec. 10, the board, in collaboration with security agencies, raided Kosofe, Alimosho, Mushin, Surulere, Oshodi-Isolo, Agege, Lagos Island and Ikorodu council areas.
He said that tens of pirated DVDs, CDs, unclassified films, film production equipment, as well as pornographic materials, were seized within the period.
Balogun added that during the raid, which was met with some resistance in some areas, cameras and other equipment were seized from presumed movie practitioners for shooting movies in the state without approval of LSFVCB.
He said the raid was part of efforts to rid the state of pirated and unclassified movies and ensure that producers of movies compiler with laid down rules in the production of films.
The LSFCVB boss said the sale of pirated and unclassified films had become a thriving business in the state, saying the board would do all possible to check the problem.
”The reality is that some people invested in producing films but in most cases, they don’t break even as a result of intellectual property theft.
”We are concerned as a government that this is happening at all. The state government is doing this for the sake of legitimate movie producers.
”The essence of our intervention is to protect movie producers and even children against such contents,” he said.
Balogun said intellectual property theft was the greatest threat to the development of the movie industry while seeking the collaboration of all stakeholders to address the problem.
The Association of Movie Content Owners and Producers had complained to the state government to assist it in curbing the menace of piracy to save the movie industry.