A southeastern Pennsylvania church and a youth pastor are facing criminal charges for a mock kidnapping of a youth group that was meant to be a lesson in religious persecution.
The Glad Tidings Assembly of God in Middletown and 28-year-old Andrew David Jordan of Elizabethtown were charged Friday with false imprisonment and simple assault, said Dauphin County District Attorney Ed Marsico.
The church staged the event in March. Mock kidnappers covered the teenagers’ heads, put them in a van and interrogated them. Neither the young people nor their parents were told beforehand that it wasn’t real. The mother of a 14-year-old girl filed a complaint with police.
“This is a sad case for all those involved,” Marsico said, adding that while the church’s and Jordan’s intentions were not necessarily harmful, “they in essence terrorized several children.”
Part of the sentence are damages that have to be paid to various entertainment industry companies. EMI Music, Universal Music, Sony Music and other labels, for example, were awarded around €550,000 to compensate artists and rightsholders for the losses they suffered.
“We have filed applications with Sweden’s Enforcement Agency to secure assets to satisfy these funds. So far very little has been recovered as the individuals have no traceable assets in Sweden and the Enforcement Agency has no powers to investigate outside Sweden. There seems little realistic prospect of recovering funds,” the document reads.
While it may come as no surprise that the music industry has a hard time getting money from The Pirate Bay defendants, what comes next may raise a few eyebrows.
“There is an agreement that any recovered funds will be paid to IFPI Sweden and IFPI London for use in future anti-piracy activities,” IFPI writes.
In other words, the money that the Court awarded to compensate artists and rightsholders for their losses is not going to the artists at all. Instead, the labels will simply hand it over to IFPI for their ongoing anti-piracy efforts, which we documented in detail earlier this week.
According to former Pirate Bay spokesman Peter Sunde, one of the people convicted in the case, this shows who the real “thieves” are.
What if 2001 had been released as a modern summer blockbuster?