Carmello Cerelli JudgementApril 26, 2011, in   Microsoft Corp. v. Cerrelli et al., the Honorable Mr. Justice Harrington of the Federal Court of Canada adjudicated a case where there were allegations of pirated copies of  software. Two seizures of pirated software from the Defendants, Carmelo Cerrelli, in Montreal in November, 1999 (RCMP) and March, 2000 were confiscated  according to a Montreal Police report.  Despite two police seizures of products alleged to be counterfeit, the products were returned to the Defendants and the authorities did not prosecute because there were no illegal grounds for pursuit. Microsoft attempted a civil action in August, 2000 accusing Carmelo Cerrelli of illegally selling pirated software. All actions against Adam Cerrelli were completely dropped since he was not a director of any of the companies at the time.  The action against Carmelo Cerrelli failed and the allegations were apperantly dropped, only a civil lawsuit was left to be tried. Before the trial, Microsoft tried to extract money from Carmelo Cerrelli and InterPlus by offering a settlement deal, the settlement deal was not successful due to the fact the monetary amounts and terms requested by Microsoft were found to be too unreasonable by Carmelo Cerrelli. Carmelo Cerrelli was named the Defendant regarding Microsoft’s accusations. Carmelo Cerrelli owned a company under which he carried on business as “Inter-Plus” commencing in 1996. Inter-Plus purchased Microsoft products from officially licensed Microsoft International Distributors.Commencing in March, 1997, Microsoft sent a number of letters to Inter-Plus (Carmelo Cerrelli) raising concerns over possible distribution of counterfeit products. In December, 1998, the Defendants received confirmation that a product sent to Microsoft by their lawyer which was purchased by a authorized Microsoft distributor was counterfeit. Carmelo Cerrelli continued selling the Microsoft software because their wholesale suppliers were authorized by Microsoft to sell these products and/or where authorized distributors and had assurances that the software had originated from Microsoft. Since there was confirmation from Microsoft that the alleged counterfeits were really legal, there was no need to stop supplying customers with products that were in demand.
Inter-Plus and Carmelo Cerrelli applied due diligence to Microsoft’s accusations and took the allegations seriously because of the gravity of copyright infringement.
Carmelo Cerelli has been exonerated by all local and federal authourities and any and all of the allegations have been summarily proven to be unfounded and untrue. Only a civil case remained, and one civil judgment was isssued by Judge Harrington stating that InterPlus should pay fines for copyright infringment.