6 Jan – The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) announced recently that several individuals have been nabbed with 49 others may be facing charges for piracy, after illegally streaming, downloading and distributing movies of the ongoing Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) on their social media accounts.
As reported on Manila Times, MMDA Chairman Danilo Lim released a statement to the media recently, stating, "Piracy is a crime. We shall pursue these violators to the full extent of the law and we shall keep a close watch against film pirates."
He also revealed that these perpetrators will face criminal charges in violation of Republic Act (RA) 8293 or the Intellectual Property Code of the Philippines and RA 9239 or Optical Media Act of 2003.
The agency will continue working with the Anti-Piracy Task Force to make sure that these perpetrators will be brought to justice.
At the same time, Lim is also calling for the creation of a permanent committee to enable MMFF to assist authorities in ending piracy.
"Let us not watch or buy pirated copies, not only that it is illegal but patronising them would discredit Filipino filmmakers' hard work, talent, money, tears and blood put into their projects," he added.
These MMFF movies that have been illegally downloaded online include the Paulo Avelino-starrer, "Fan Girl", Joe Lamangan's "Isa Pang Bahaghari", as well as the comedy, "Mang Kepweng: Ang Lihim ng Bandanang Itim".
(Photo Source: Charlie Dizon Instagram)