Nintendo has announced that Mexican authorities have snatched up 15,000 counterfeit Nintendo products from a Guadalajara market, including 4,500 counterfeit Wii games. Jodi Daugherty, Nintendo of America's senior director of anti-piracy, calls the Mexican market's piracy problem "widespread" and puts the number of seized unauthorised games at 100,000 for this calendar year.
The company made headlines recently for its recent civil suit win against a Uruguayan counterfeiter and for its support of the U.S. government's stance on Chinese piracy.
We have absolutely no confirmation that the video game pirates looked anything like the Mexican bandits from The Treasure of the Sierra Madre, but it's the most insensitive image we could generate on short notice. Full PR after the jump.Mexican Raids Net 15,000 Counterfeit Nintendo Products
Mexican authorities conducted raids today against 12 alleged distributors of counterfeit NintendoÂ® products in a major "fayuca" (contraband) market in Guadalajara. Authorities seized 15,000 counterfeit Nintendo products, including 4,500 counterfeit Wiiâ„¢ game discs.
The Guadalajara raids follow other Nintendo actions in Mexico during the past few months. Last month, Nintendo worked with customs agents to stop a shipment of more than 5,500 counterfeit Nintendo products entering Manzanillo, exported from China. Prior to that, Nintendo assisted local authorities in a raid of the San Juan de Dios market in Guadalajara, where 23 stores were shut down and more than 56,000 counterfeit Nintendo products were confiscated, including 11,000 counterfeit Wii discs.
"Mexico is Nintendo's largest market in Latin America, where the problem of video game piracy is widespread," said Jodi Daugherty, Nintendo of America's senior director of anti-piracy. "Since January, Nintendo has worked with law enforcement agencies worldwide to seize 100,000 counterfeit Wii games."
Earlier this month, U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement agents executed 32 federal search warrants in 16 states as part of an investigation into the alleged sale and distribution of illegal Wii modification chips designed to circumvent the security embedded in the hardware and allow users to play counterfeit Wii software.
Nintendo and its developers and publishers lost an estimated $US762 million in sales in 2006 due to piracy of its products.