MPAA Employs Piracy-Sniffing Dogs

There is two new members in the fight against pirate DVDs: two black Labrador Retrievers named Lucky and Flo. The MPAA has backed the Federation Against Copyright Theft (FACT) in training the two dogs to sniff out DVDs in packages coming into the United Kingdom.

The groups claim that pirated DVDs are often smuggled in packages with other contents. In their first test at FedEx's British hub at Stansted Airport in Essex, England, Lucky and Flo successfully sniffed out packages and parcels containing DVDs.

The dogs would work at the FedEx hub, looking for these packages daily. "Our message to anyone thinking about shipping counterfeit DVDs through the FedEx network is simple: you're going to get caught," FedEx UK managing director Trevor Hoyle said. "FedEx employs state-of-the art security, and now Lucky and Flo are on the case."

FACT has so far been successful in seizing over 2 million pirated DVDs during 2005. The group claims that those involved in the trade often are partners in other serious crimes, including human smuggling, exploitation of children, possession of firearms, and benefit fraud.

The group lauded the dogs work, saying it opened up a new front in the fight against piracy. "With the cooperation and assistance of FedEx and Customs we were able to properly test the dogs in a real life situation and prove that they can work in a busy airport environment," Director General Raymond Leinster said.

FACT did not specify whether it had plans to expand the program to other locations.

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