California Code, Penal Code - PEN § 593d

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(a) Except as provided in subdivision (e), any person who, for the purpose of intercepting, receiving, or using any program or other service carried by a multichannel video or information services provider that the person is not authorized by that provider to receive or use, commits any of the following acts is guilty of a public offense:

(1) Knowingly and willfully makes or maintains an unauthorized connection or connections, whether physically, electrically, electronically, or inductively, to any cable, wire, or other component of a multichannel video or information services provider's system or to a cable, wire or other media, or receiver that is attached to a multichannel video or information services provider's system.

(2) Knowingly and willfully purchases, possesses, attaches, causes to be attached, assists others in attaching, or maintains the attachment of any unauthorized device or devices to any cable, wire, or other component of a multichannel video or information services provider's system or to a cable, wire or other media, or receiver that is attached to a multichannel video or information services provider's system.

(3) Knowingly and willfully makes or maintains any modification or alteration to any device installed with the authorization of a multichannel video or information services provider.

(4) Knowingly and willfully makes or maintains any modifications or alterations to an access device that authorizes services or knowingly and willfully obtains an unauthorized access device and uses the modified, altered, or unauthorized access device to obtain services from a multichannel video or information services provider.

For purposes of this section, each purchase, possession, connection, attachment, or modification shall constitute a separate violation of this section.

(b) Except as provided in subdivision (e), any person who knowingly and willfully manufactures, assembles, modifies, imports into this state, distributes, sells, offers to sell, advertises for sale, or possesses for any of these purposes, any device or kit for a device, designed, in whole or in part, to decrypt, decode, descramble, or otherwise make intelligible any encrypted, encoded, scrambled, or other nonstandard signal carried by a multichannel video or information services provider, unless the device has been granted an equipment authorization by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), is guilty of a public offense.

For purposes of this subdivision, “encrypted, encoded, scrambled, or other nonstandard signal” means any type of signal or transmission that is not intended to produce an intelligible program or service without the use of a special device, signal, or information provided by the multichannel video or information services provider or its agents to authorized subscribers.

(c) Every person who knowingly and willfully makes or maintains an unauthorized connection or connections with, whether physically, electrically, electronically, or inductively, or who attaches, causes to be attached, assists others in attaching, or maintains any attachment to, any cable, wire, or other component of a multichannel video or information services provider's system, for the purpose of interfering with, altering, or degrading any multichannel video or information service being transmitted to others, or for the purpose of transmitting or broadcasting any program or other service not intended to be transmitted or broadcast by the multichannel video or information services provider, is guilty of a public offense.

For purposes of this section, each transmission or broadcast shall constitute a separate violation of this section.

(d)(1) Any person who violates subdivision (a) shall be punished by a fine not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000), by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding 90 days, or by both that fine and imprisonment.

(2) Any person who violates subdivision (b) shall be punished as follows:

(A) If the violation involves the manufacture, assembly, modification, importation into this state, distribution, advertisement for sale, or possession for sale or for any of these purposes, of 10 or more of the items described in subdivision (b), or the sale or offering for sale of five or more items for financial gain, the person shall be punished by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year, or in the state prison, by a fine not exceeding two hundred fifty thousand dollars ($250,000), or by both that imprisonment and fine.

(B) If the violation involves the manufacture, assembly, modification, importation into this state, distribution, advertisement for sale, or possession for sale or for any of these purposes, of nine or less of the items described in subdivision (b), or the sale or offering for sale of four or less items for financial gain, shall upon a conviction of a first offense, be punished by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year, by a fine not exceeding twenty-five thousand dollars ($25,000), or by both that imprisonment and fine.  A second or subsequent conviction shall be punished by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year, or in the state prison, by a fine not exceeding one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000), or by both that imprisonment and fine.

(3) Any person who violates subdivision (c) shall be punished by a fine not exceeding ten thousand dollars ($10,000), by imprisonment in a county jail, or by both that fine and imprisonment.

(e) Any device or kit described in subdivision (a) or (b) seized under warrant or incident to a lawful arrest, upon the conviction of a person for a violation of subdivision (a) or (b), may be destroyed as contraband by the sheriff.

(f) Any person who violates this section shall be liable in a civil action to the multichannel video or information services provider for the greater of the following amounts:

(1) Five thousand dollars ($5,000).

(2) Three times the amount of actual damages, if any, sustained by the plaintiff plus reasonable attorney's fees.

A defendant who prevails in the action shall be awarded his or her reasonable attorney's fees.

(g) Any multichannel video or information services provider may, in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 3 (commencing with Section 525 ) of Title 7 of Part 2 of the Code of Civil Procedure, bring an action to enjoin and restrain any violation of this section, and may in the same action seek damages as provided in subdivision (f).

(h) It is not a necessary prerequisite to an action pursuant to this section that the plaintiff has suffered, or be threatened with, actual damages.

(i) For the purposes of this section, a “multichannel video or information services provider” means a franchised or otherwise duly licensed cable television system, video dialtone system, Multichannel Multipoint Distribution Service system, Direct Broadcast Satellite system, or other system providing video or information services that are distributed via cable, wire, radio frequency, or other media.  A video dialtone system is a platform operated by a public utility telephone corporation for the transport of video programming as authorized by the Federal Communications Commission pursuant to FCC Docket No. 87-266, and any subsequent decisions related to that docket, subject to any rules promulgated by the FCC pursuant to those decisions.

Cite this article: FindLaw.com - California Code, Penal Code - PEN § 593d - last updated January 01, 2019 | https://codes.findlaw.com/ca/penal-code/pen-sect-593d.html


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