A resident of the United Kingdom who resold IPTV pirate boxes under Android has just seen his sentence pronounced. If he resold his boxes openly in his physical store and on eBay, he tried to conceal certain evidence throughout the investigation which led to his arrest. He was eventually sentenced to 30 months in prison.
In the mid-2010s, the company Droidstickswhich offered IPTV boxes delivered with a ready-to-use Kodi pack, has earned a strong reputation in the UK. But the box, which ran on Android, contained everything needed to receive thousands of channels and streaming services… Completely illegally.
Halton Powell, sole manager of the company in question, ended up being arrested in 2016, but it was only today that his trial took place. And if he managed to earn more than 2.5 million euros with his small business, the sentence has just fallen.
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This seller of pirate IPTV boxes raised more than 2.6 million euros
To market his box, Halton Powell did not look far: if he had his own shop, he also used eBay. Although having no information as to the contents of the box, the platform quickly became concerned with the dazzling sales of the device.
An investigation was thus carried out in March 2015. After buying a box of DroidSticks, the investigator found that it used the famous Kodi software (formerly known as XBMC). Nothing objectionable per se, except that the box also contained a pack called Righticks Wizard. This application allows you to install a whole bunch of additional modules, which provide a way to access pirated streams of channels and streaming services.
In June 2016, a search led to the seizure of 1,300 devices in a storage box, as well as 121 other devices in the Halton Powell store. In the end, the main interested party managed to sell 24,515 models from his box, for a total of 2,344,949 pounds, or just over 2.6 million euros. Halton Powell, who initially refused to close up shop, tried to conceal some incriminating evidence. In particular, he switched his user support forum to private mode.
He pleads guilty and finally receives 2 and a half years in prison.
But too late, the damage was done and it was not the evidence that was missing. During his trial on November 11, 2022, Halton Powell had to plead guilty. He was eventually sentenced to 2 years and 6 months in prison, the Court having ruled that he was fully aware of what he was doing.
This is obviously not the first case of its kind, but it is one of the heaviest. We remember, for example, a seller of boxes who had been ordered to pay 145,000 euros at the start of the year or this other who had received a 2-year suspended prison sentence, but who had won “only” 96 000 euros on eBay.
It is not known at this time if all or part of the money collected by Halton Powell is still in his bank account, but the Crown Prosecution Service wants to initiate proceedings to recover all the assets potentially still available.