Two held over online film release
Two men have been arrested in Britain on suspicion of leaking action film Expendables 3 online before its official release - costing the studio millions of pounds.
The Hollywood film, which stars Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger, illegally appeared on internet websites in July, a month before it was due to hit the big screen.
City of London Police said the leaked film was viewed hundreds of thousands of times online.
Detectives from the police intellectual property crime unit (PIPCU) arrested a 36-year-old man at his home in Upton in the Wirral and a 33-year-old man at his home in Dewsbury, West Yorkshire.
City of London Police said the pair are believed to have stolen the film from a cloud-based system before uploading it on to the internet.
Police said the leak had a "significant financial impact" on film-makers Lionsgate and Millennium Films, costing them millions of pounds in the UK alone.
The two men have been taken to local police stations for questioning.
Head of PIPCU Detective Chief Inspector Danny Medlycott said: "Today's operation shows you the significant impact intellectual property crime has on our creative industries, with millions of pounds being lost as a result of criminal actions.
"The public need to be aware that piracy is not a victimless crime. By downloading illegal music, film, TV and books, not only are you exposing your own computer to the risk of viruses and malware, but you are also putting hardworking people's livelihoods at risk as piracy threatens the security of thousands of jobs in the UK's creative industries."
PIPCU is based within the economic crime directorate of the City of London Police, the national lead force for fraud.
It is a specialist national police unit dedicated to protecting UK industries from intellectual property crime.
A City of London Police spokeswoman said these are the first PIPCU arrests of people suspected of obtaining a film prior to release and without permission.