U.S. prosecutors have seized 10 websites that illegally streamed live sporting broadcasts and pay-per-view content over the Internet.
The websites, which were seized Tuesday, as part of an ongoing investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), include atdhe.net, channelsurfing.net, firstrow.net, hq-streams.com, hq-streams.net, ilemi.com, iilemi.com, iilemii.com, rojadirecta.com and rojadirecta.org.
"The illegal streaming of professional sporting events over the Internet deals a financial body blow to the leagues and broadcasters who are forced to pass their losses off to the fans in the form of higher priced tickets and pay-per-view events," said U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York Preet Bharara.
"With the Super Bowl just days away, the seizures of these infringing websites reaffirm our commitment to working with our law enforcement partners to protect copyrighted material and put the people who steal it out of business."
Visitors to these websites are being redirected to a banner that advises them that the domain name has been seized by the New York office of ICE HSI because of criminal copyright violations.