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Web Site Owner Gets 7 Years for Piracy

The owner of one of the nation's largest Internet software piracy Web sites has been sentenced to more than seven years in prison.

Nathan Peterson, 27, of Los Angeles, sold products copyrighted by companies such as Microsoft Corp. and Adobe Systems Inc. at a huge discount on his site, iBackups.net, prosecutors said. The site began operating in 2003 and was shut down by the FBI in February 2005.

In addition to Friday's 87-month sentence, U.S. District Court Judge T.S. Ellis III ordered Peterson to pay restitution of more than $5.4 million and to forfeit the proceeds of his scheme, which included homes, cars and a boat.

Peterson pleaded guilty in December in Alexandria to two counts of copyright infringement.

Justice Department and industry officials called the case one of the largest involving Internet software piracy ever prosecuted.

Last month, Ellis sentenced a Florida man to six years in prison for selling illegal copies of computer programs on another site, BuysUSA.com.

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