(a) Offense.–Any person who, without the authorization of the copyright owner, knowingly uses or attempts to use an audiovisual recording device to transmit or make a copy of a motion picture or other audiovisual work protected under title 17, or any part thereof, from a performance of such work in a motion picture exhibition facility, shall–

Terms Used In 18 USC 2319B

  • Contract: A legal written agreement that becomes binding when signed.
  • Conviction: A judgement of guilt against a criminal defendant.
  • Evidence: Information presented in testimony or in documents that is used to persuade the fact finder (judge or jury) to decide the case for one side or the other.
  • officer: includes any person authorized by law to perform the duties of the office. See 1 USC 1
  • Presentence report: A report prepared by a court's probation officer, after a person has been convicted of an offense, summarizing for the court the background information needed to determine the appropriate sentence. Source: U.S. Courts
  • Probation: A sentencing alternative to imprisonment in which the court releases convicted defendants under supervision as long as certain conditions are observed.
  • Restitution: The court-ordered payment of money by the defendant to the victim for damages caused by the criminal action.
  • United States: as used in this title in a territorial sense, includes all places and waters, continental or insular, subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, except the Canal Zone. See 18 USC 5
  • Victim Impact Statement: A written or spoken statement by the victim or his or her representative about the physical, emotional, and financial impact of a crime on the victim. The statement is given to the court before sentencing.

(1) be imprisoned for not more than 3 years, fined under this title, or both; or

(2) if the offense is a second or subsequent offense, be imprisoned for no more than 6 years, fined under this title, or both.


The possession by a person of an audiovisual recording device in a motion picture exhibition facility may be considered as evidence in any proceeding to determine whether that person committed an offense under this subsection, but shall not, by itself, be sufficient to support a conviction of that person for such offense.

(b) Forfeiture and Destruction of Property; Restitution.–Forfeiture, destruction, and restitution relating to this section shall be subject to section 2323, to the extent provided in that section, in addition to any other similar remedies provided by law.

(c) Authorized Activities.–This section does not prevent any lawfully authorized investigative, protective, or intelligence activity by an officer, agent, or employee of the United States, a State, or a political subdivision of a State, or by a person acting under a contract with the United States, a State, or a political subdivision of a State.

(d) Immunity for Theaters.–With reasonable cause, the owner or lessee of a motion picture exhibition facility where a motion picture or other audiovisual work is being exhibited, the authorized agent or employee of such owner or lessee, the licensor of the motion picture or other audiovisual work being exhibited, or the agent or employee of such licensor–

(1) may detain, in a reasonable manner and for a reasonable time, any person suspected of a violation of this section with respect to that motion picture or audiovisual work for the purpose of questioning or summoning a law enforcement officer; and

(2) shall not be held liable in any civil or criminal action arising out of a detention under paragraph (1).


(e) Victim Impact Statement.–

(1) In general.–During the preparation of the presentence report under rule 32(c) of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure, victims of an offense under this section shall be permitted to submit to the probation officer a victim impact statement that identifies the victim of the offense and the extent and scope of the injury and loss suffered by the victim, including the estimated economic impact of the offense on that victim.

(2) Contents.–A victim impact statement submitted under this subsection shall include–

(A) producers and sellers of legitimate works affected by conduct involved in the offense;

(B) holders of intellectual property rights in the works described in subparagraph (A); and

(C) the legal representatives of such producers, sellers, and holders.


(f) State Law Not Preempted.–Nothing in this section may be construed to annul or limit any rights or remedies under the laws of any State.

(g) Definitions.–In this section, the following definitions shall apply:

(1) Title 17 definitions.–The terms “audiovisual work”, “copy”, “copyright owner”, “motion picture”, “motion picture exhibition facility”, and “transmit” have, respectively, the meanings given those terms in section 101 of title 17.

(2) Audiovisual recording device.–The term “audiovisual recording device” means a digital or analog photographic or video camera, or any other technology or device capable of enabling the recording or transmission of a copyrighted motion picture or other audiovisual work, or any part thereof, regardless of whether audiovisual recording is the sole or primary purpose of the device.