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Copyright 2001

[ December 14th 2001 ]

A man accused of illegally branding fake computer discs said when interviewed that they were his hobby, a court heard. In an interview read to the jury at Bristol Crown Court Colin Coleman said he had bought discs at markets for friends.

Coleman, aged 52, of St Andrews Road, Avonmouth, has denied 11 specimen charges, including six of using a registered trademark without the owner's consent on CDs and five of using fake branding on the packaging.

Prosecutor Michael Fitton said Coleman used official trademarks illegally on copied computer programmes. He said Coleman had no permission from owners of registered trademarks to use logos such as PlayStation, EA Sports or Tomb Raider.

The court heard when interviewed Coleman said he was "Joe Public" and had bought things which were on open sale from the Tollgate market at Southville, from Southmead and Eastville. He said a list of names of people found at his home where he had a computer room were of people who had asked him to get games for them as he made frequent visits to the markets.

Asked about copies of games found at his home, he said they were for himself and the copies had not been made by his machines. Coleman agreed he had one machine which was capable of making copies and another capable of pulling labels off the Internet. He said games found at his home had been accumulated over years.

The statement said he understood he could make a back-up copy of something without infringing copyright and he did not know about trademarks. Coleman agreed that he had spent GBP400 to GBP500 a month on discs at one point and that he advertised PlayStation chips for sale but added: "I have never printed off or sold any PC software myself."

He said copies made were for himself and not for personal gain and that the games found were due to his obsessive personality. The trial continues.

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