Lucky and Flo Credited for Latest Bootleg Bust

“Physical pirates, armed with the latest movie or TV series burned onto counterfeit Bootleg DVD’s, have spread themselves throughout the streets of Malaysia, profiting in the lucrative business of bootleg optical piracy.

Note: This is an article I wrote that was published elsewhere first. It has been republished here for archival purposes

It seemed like an endless, unstoppable nightmare for the movie companies, but this Summer, two hero’s will emerge with 8 legs and two noses that could change the playing field forever. Johore, Kuala Lumpur, Penang, Lucky and Flo star in, ‘Piracy: Asia’!”

It may sound like a theatrical release, possibly one that would rake in millions, but in the eyes of the Motion Picture Association (MPA), it’s actually two real life dogs named Lucky and Flo trained to detect pirated optical discs. Recently, they were credited for another significant bootleg piracy bust in Malaysia.

In 2006, the two anti-piracy Labradors were introduced (PDF) by FACT (Federation Against Copyright Theft). The dogs were then deployed to Malaysia to aid officials fight physical piracy and helped score a number of significant victories against bootleggers. Unfortunately for the dogs, the operator of a particularly vicious operation put a bounty on the canine’s heads. Malaysian authorities considered the threat serious and took measures to protect the dogs. The two dogs gradually faded out of the media spotlight until now.

A suspected bootleg factory, which had piled over 300 bags of fertilizer in an attempt to mask their operation, recently fell victim to Lucky and Flo. Twenty two officials from the Ministry of Domestic Trade & Consumer Affairs (MDTCA) and the MPA were on scene and arrested four suspects. They have also seized 18,000 bootleg discs containing the latest movies including The Simpsons Movie, Transformers, Spiderman 3, Pirates of the Caribbean and Hot Fuzz.

“Lucky and Flo have done it once again. Their deployment in Malaysia has been a great success. And this is only because the MDTCA has and continues to show tremendous leadership in tackling the piracy problem” said Mike Ellis, Senior Vice President and Regional Director, Asia-Pacific for the MPA. “The Malaysian government’s aggressive enforcement measures send a clear message that piracy will not be tolerated. We therefore remain fully committed to support them in their operations.”

Drew Wilson on Twitter: @icecube85 and Google+.

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