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Illegal DVD peddler slapped with six months’ jail

PUBLISHED: 18:42 13 January 2009 | UPDATED: 13:57 05 October 2010

A CHINESE woman caught selling fake DVDs on the streets of East London has been locked up for seven months. It was the second time Xiu Zhang had been caught peddling the dodgy gear when she was in breach of a previous suspended jail sentence

A CHINESE woman caught selling fake DVDs on the streets of East London has been locked up for seven months.

It was the second time Xiu Zhang had been caught peddling the dodgy gear when she was in breach of a previous suspended jail sentence.

The 31-year-old admitted selling counterfeit DVDs in Whitechapel, contravening the 1994 Trade Marks Act and the 1984 Video Recordings Act, when she appeared at Thames Magistrates’ court.

Zhang was peddling the stuff to passers-by for £3 each outside Whitechapel Underground station when police and Tower Hamlets trading standards officers spotted her on October 4.

Tower Hamlets councillor Abdal Ullah fears the Whitechapel Road has become a magnet’ for pirate DVD peddlers from all over London.

“People should be able to walk down Whitechapel without being hassled,” he said after the court hearing.

“Film piracy is also making vast profits for organised crime networks around the world.”

Zhang was slapped with 16 weeks’ behind bars, plus another 12 weeks for her previous sentence which had been suspended in good faith, totalling 28 weeks. She is serving a minimum half-sentence before being released on licence—but will be back inside if she puts a foot wrong. All her hooky DVDs seized by cops were ordered to be destroyed.


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