Middlesbrough 'Kodi Box' Seller Ordered to Pay a Whopping £1 Back to the Government

By Tom Pritchard on at

If you've been following the news around Kodi the past few years, you'll be well aware of the case of Brian 'Tomo' Thompson who was arrested and successfully prosecuted for selling the so-called 'fully loaded Kodi boxes' that were promoted as ways of accessing premium content without paying for it. Many thought the story would end after he pleaded guilty in court, but things are never as they seem.

Thompson was originally arrested back in 2015, following a raid on his shop by trading standards, and first appeared in court the following year. He insisted that selling the boxes with the intention of freely accessing copyrighted material was a "grey area" and claimed he wanted to see everything explained in black and white. Unfortunately the law was pretty clear on the matter and he was set to go on trial last year, in what would have been a landmark case in the fight against piracy. Except he then changed his plea to guilty, and the whole thing was avoided, and eventually received a suspended sentence.

In this country people found guilty of earning money illegally can be ordered to pay back their profits, under the Proceeds of Crime Act. Thompson allegedly made around £38,500 from selling the boxes, so you'd imagine the government would seize whatever assets he has as a result. Except that's not the case, because Thompson apparently has no assets to speak of. So the judge has decided he's to pay back a single pound, but noted that the amount might increase if Thompson got lucky in the future - using a lottery win as an example.

That's probably the last we'll hear from this case, unless Thompson decides to restart his business of selling dodgy illegal streaming boxes for whatever reason. It's not really the outcome rights holders and police will have wanted, especially given the level of importance attached to the case, but they can probably sleep better at night knowing that another Kodi Box seller is off the streets. [Gazette Live via TorrentFreak]