Court Upholds $675,000 Fee College Student Must Pay For Illegally Sharing 30 Songs

It’s been almost two years since a former student from Boston was re-ordered to pay $675,000 for illegally sharing 30 songs. That judgment had been downgraded to $67,500 by one court and deemed unconstitutional, and then ticked right back up again. Another federal appeals court has just ruled he’s still on the hook.

A jury ordered the Providence, R.I. resident to pony up $22,500 for each of the songs, after the Recording Industry Association of America sued him on behalf of four record labels, reports the Associated Press. It’s one of only a couple cases the RIAA brought that actually made it to a jury.

He’d been arguing — for years, now — that the more than half a million dollars he’s been ordered to pay violates his due process rights, because it isn’t tied to the injury he caused. He sees that as more like $450, about the cost of 30 albums.

But alas, the court found his conduct was “egregious” because he’d shared the songs for years even after being warned multiple times not to.

This is likely the end of the judicial road for the man, as last year the U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear his appeal.

*Note — an earlier version of this post indicated he’d also illegally downloaded the songs, but the fine is just for sharing them. Thanks, Gretchen!

Mass. student’s $675,000 song-sharing fine upheld [Associated Press]

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