Nintendo has praised the Paris Court of Appeals for ruling against six companies that sell "linkers," such as the R4, that allow players to run illegal copies of copyrighted Nintendo DS software.
Last month's decision comes after raids in 2007 and 2008 caught what Nintendo terms "arguably... some of the most prolific importers, distributors and sellers of these devices." The distributors were ordering to pay over 5.2 million euros ($6.9 million) in damages and fines, and some received suspended prison terms, Nintendo said.
"Nintendo supported this criminal action not only for the company's sake, but for the interests of its game developer partners who spend time and money legitimately developing software for Nintendo's game platforms, and customers who expect the highest standards and integrity from products bearing the Nintendo name," Nintendo France managing director Stephan Bole said in a statement.
Last year, courts in England
and the Netherlands
ruled similarly against sellers of R4 devices in those countries. Germany, Italy and Belgium have also seen such decisions, and a U.S. District Court ruled in 2009 that the devices violate the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.
While linkers can be used to run un-copyrighted homebrew software, many if not most users load the devices with illegal copies of commercial software, resulting in what Japan's CESA estimates as $41.5 billion in portable software sales losses
over 6 years.