The man accused of leaking nine previously unreleased Guns N’ Roses songs — believed to be tracks taken from the band’s oft-delayed LP Chinese Democracy — was arrested by FBI agents Wednesday (August 27) at his Culver City, California, home, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Kevin Cogill, 27, was charged on suspicion of violating federal copyright laws and has been accused of posting the unreleased material online via the Antiquiet blog. The tracks were posted on the site back in June, and the leak generated so much traffic that the site crashed. The song files have since been removed.
The Times reports that according to his arrest affidavit, Cogill allegedly admitted to posting the tracks online when he was questioned by FBI agents just days after the tracks hit the Web. He was due to appear in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles later Wednesday afternoon.
Kathy Leodler, director of investigations for the Recording Industry Association of America’s Western region office in Los Angeles, told the Times that Cogill is the first person to be arrested under a new federal copyright law
“The arrest of Kevin Cogill is great for the recording industry related to our online investigations,” she said. “We are very pleased with the FBI’s interest and the U.S. attorney’s office’s aggressiveness in pursuing this investigation. We think we’ll see more and more of these pre-release cases.”
Peter Jaszi, an American University law professor, questioned the FBI’s tactics and told the Times that, “In Los Angeles, the music industry is, in fact, a significant local industry. But why pursue this person out of all the other alleged copyright violations out there?”
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