U.S. asks Poland to extradite Ukrainian citizen, owner of most-visited illegal file-sharing website

10:40, 21 July 2016
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Washington has requested the extradition of the Ukrainian citizen, the owner of file-sharing website KAT, who was arrested in Poland for copyright infringement related to the distribution of more than $1 billion worth of movies, video games, music recordings and other content, U.S. justice officials said.


Artem Vaulin, 30, of Kharkiv, Ukraine, allegedly owns and operates Kickass Torrents, or KAT, a commercial website that since 2008 has enabled users to illegally reproduce and distribute hundreds of millions of copies of copyrighted motion pictures, video games, television programs, musical recordings and other electronic media, collectively valued at more than $1 billion, according to a criminal complaint filed in U.S. District Court in Chicago. 

KAT receives more than 50 million unique monthly visitors and is estimated to be the 69th most frequently visited website on the Internet, according to the complaint.

KAT's net worth has been estimated at more than $54 million, with estimated annual advertising revenue in the range of $12.5 million to $22.3 million, according to the report.

Read alsoEstonian citizen suspected of terrorism to be extradited to Ukraine"In an effort to evade law enforcement, Vaulin allegedly relied on servers located in countries around the world and moved his domains due to repeated seizures and civil lawsuits.  His arrest in Poland, however, demonstrates again that cybercriminals can run, but they cannot hide from justice," said Assistant Attorney General Caldwell.

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