California Code, Penal Code - PEN § 653u

(a) Any person who records or masters or causes to be recorded or mastered on any article with the intent to sell for commercial advantage or private financial gain, the sounds of a live performance with the knowledge that the sounds thereon have been recorded or mastered without the consent of the owner of the sounds of the live performance is guilty of a public offense punishable as provided in subdivisions (d) and (e).

(b) In the absence of a written agreement or operation of law to the contrary, the performer or performers of the sounds of a live performance shall be presumed to own the right to record or master those sounds.

(c)(1) For purposes of this section, a person who is authorized to maintain custody and control over business records reflecting the consent of the owner to the recordation or master recording of a live performance shall be a proper witness in any proceeding regarding the issue of consent.

(2) Any witness called pursuant to this section shall be subject to all rules of evidence relating to the competency of a witness to testify and the relevance and admissibility of the testimony offered.

(d) Any person who has been convicted of a violation of subdivision (a) shall be punished by imprisonment in the county jail not to exceed one year, or by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170 for two, three, or five years, or by a fine not to exceed five hundred thousand dollars ($500,000), or by both that fine and imprisonment, if the offense involves the recording, mastering, or causing to be recorded or mastered at least 1,000 articles described in subdivision (a).

(e) Any person who has been convicted of any other violation of subdivision (a) not described in subdivision (d), shall be punished by imprisonment in the county jail not to exceed one year, or by a fine not to exceed fifty thousand dollars ($50,000), or by both that fine and imprisonment.  A second or subsequent conviction under subdivision (a) not described in subdivision (d) shall be punished by imprisonment in the county jail not to exceed one year or pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170 or by a fine not to exceed two hundred thousand dollars ($200, 000), or by both that fine and imprisonment.


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