Dutch royalty collection executive forced to resign in extortion scandal

Dutch royalty collection executive forced to resign in extortion scandal
A member of the board of Dutch music collection agency Buma/Stemra has resigned in the midst of a scandal around accusations he tried to shake down a composer who was merely asking him to do his job.

Jochem Gerrits is accused of demanding Melchior Rietveldt turn over a third of his royalties in exchange for bringing the matter before the agency's board. Rietveldt's claim revolves around a piece of music he wrote for Dutch anti-piracy firm BREIN to use in a video.

Rietveldt says the music has been distributed on tens of millions of Dutch DVDs, which isn't covered in the contract he signed for the piece. He is looking for more than 1 million eurosin royalties.

It's unclear what part BREIN may have played in the music being used without authorization, but it doesn't appear they have any connection with Gerrits' actions.

Gerrits made the demand in a phone call with Rietveldt's lawyer, not realizing the call was being recorded. Although he claims his statements are being taken out of context, they seem to stand on their own.

According to TorrentFreak, when asked why the composer should share the money with him, he said, "It could be because a lot of people in the industry know that they are in trouble when I get involved."

Of course, getting involved in this sort of dispute is his job. According to DutchNews.nl, Gerrits went on to say, "You have to look at it positively, he could otherwise end up with nothing."

Written by: Rich Fiscus @ 2 Dec 2011 14:44
BREIN Royalties Buma/Stemra Netherlands corrupt
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  • KillerBug

    I am sure they will try to throw all the blame onto this guy, in spite of the fact that they are all corrupt, as clearly shown by the fact that they openly pirate content.

    2.12.2011 23:42 #1

  • blueboy09

    Not too surprising since corruption is so rampant these days, he got caught and he will suffer the consuquence as a result of their actions.

    Chance prepares the favored mind. Look up once in a while and you might learn something. - BLUEBOY

    3.12.2011 16:48 #2

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