There is a concerted effort in the U.S., U.K., and Canada as Digital Music News (DMN) reports, “to better monitor the fairness of ticket sales.” Obviously, part of that effort includes the latest related piece of news from the U.K.
Peter Hunter and David Thomas Smith, two well-positioned ticket scalpers there have just been sentenced to six-plus years in jail. The duo “used multiple identities and bots to purchase desirable tickets to concerts held by Taylor Swift, Ed Sheeran, and Coldplay, among many other artists.”
According to the prosecutors in this case “Hunter and Smith bought about $5.2 million worth of tickets and sold them to eager fans for approximately $14.1 million, all under the BZZ Limited banner (though a number of websites were operated by the company). Upon raiding Smith and Hunter’s homes, investigators found over 110 credit/debit cards in nearly 40 different names.”
It is also said that the duo received several warnings between 2010 and 2017 for their illicit activities. These also included “providing customers with invalid tickets, in addition to the chief charge of thinning the ticket market and inflating prices”. British authorities stopped the operation after that.
Judge Khokhar who presided over the case handed Hunter four years, while Smith got two and a half years in prison. He also added that “’he took no pleasure’ in handing down the sentences, but that he felt compelled to do so on behalf of the public interest. For reference, common assault is punishable by a maximum of six months in jail under UK law.”