GNR Leaker Off the Hook

Guns N' Roses - Chinese DemocracyRemember the kid who was arrested in 2008 for leaking a few unfinished tracks off Chinese Democracy? Kevin “Skwerl” Cogill pled not guilty, his charges were reduced, and a year ago he was sentenced to house arrest. One other condition of the sentence was that Cogill would have to “participate in a public service announcement designed to educate the public that music piracy is illegal.”

Well, that PSA never happened, and Wired points out that as of yesterday, he’s no longer under the court’s jurisdiction. That is to say: he got off scott free.

“I knew as soon as this went down, nobody would give a shit about me doing a PSA,” Cogill said in a recent telephone interview. […]

The proposed court-ordered PSA was vaguely defined from the beginning, he said. “We had some conversations about it, hypothetical conversations,” Cogill said. “I said everybody is going to laugh at it.” […]

Cara Duckworth, a spokeswoman for the RIAA, which alerted the FBI to Cogill’s unlawful uploading, said in a Wednesday e-mail that the RIAA has “discretion whether or not to move forward” with a public service announcement.

“Due to various elements of this case (not to mention unnecessarily high production costs), we chose not to produce one,” the e-mail said.

So there you have it, kiddies. Filesharing will get you in big trouble. There is one more lesson in all of this:

The best advice he got was from his Los Angeles lawyer, Kaloyanides. “He told me,” Cogill said, “‘to shut my fucking mouth and don’t say shit to the feds.'” But Kaloyanides was retained too late, after Cogill spilled the beans and handed over his laptop.

Remember: you have the right to remain silent. Don’t say shit to cops unless you have a lawyer with you.

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2 thoughts on “GNR Leaker Off the Hook”

  1. “Due to various elements of this case (not to mention unnecessarily high production costs), we chose not to produce [a PSA],” the e-mail said.

    Um, how expensive would it be to put the guy in front of a digital camera and make a short statement? Hmm…

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