Tokyo, Japan, (Dec. 7, 2007) – SQUARE ENIX CO., LTD. (Square Enix) today announced that on Dec. 6, 2007, the Seoul Central District Court (Judge Gu Heogeun) sentenced Phantom Entertainment Group (Phantom), a Korean talent agency, to pay a fine of 10 million Korean Won. Mr. Lee Han-woo, director of Phantom, and Mr. Hong Jeong-ho were also each ordered to pay a fine of 6 million Korean Won after Square Enix filed a criminal complaint with the Seoul Central District Prosecutors' Office against Phantom and Mr. Hong Jeong-ho on March 20, 2007.
"This judgment by the Seoul Central District Court is stringent in comparison to other copyright infringement cases in South Korea, and we appreciate that the maliciousness of this infringement has been recognized in a public forum," said Yasuhiko Hasegawa, Square Enix's General Counsel. "Square Enix will continue to take decisive action against any infringements upon the Company's intellectual property, recognizing that this property is one of our most crucial resources."
On March 20, 2007, Square Enix filed a criminal complaint with the Seoul Central District Prosecutors' Office against Phantom for adapting part of its CG-animated film FINAL FANTASY® VII ADVENT CHILDRENTM without obtaining permission, producing live-action footage, and commercially appropriating it in the music video for “Yuhok ui Sonata (Sonata of Temptation)”, a new song by IVY, a popular singer affiliated with Phantom, and against Mr. Hong Jeong-ho who produced and directed the music video. On September 3, 2007, the Seoul Central District Prosecutors' Office filed charges against them.
The civil lawsuit against Phantom and Mr. Hong Jeong-ho seeking damages and other remedies that Square Enix filed on June 22, 2007 is still under dispute in the Seoul Central District Court.
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