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3 Typical Copyright Infringement Cases Criminally Prosecuted in Vietnam


In recent years, Vietnam has emerged as a hotbed for copyright infringement, fueled by the rapid growth of websites and services that distribute pirated content. Sites like Phimmoi, Fmovies, AniWave, 123movies, BestBuyIPTV, and 2embed not only cause significant damage to the domestic creative market but also adversely affect the global industry. The popularity of these pirated movie sites stems from the substantial profits they generate.

However, Vietnamese enforcement agencies have made significant efforts in law enforcement to address copyright infringement cases, especially in the field of digital content and online distribution. KENFOX IP & Law Office highlights three typical cases of criminal prosecution for copyright infringement in Vietnam.

Case 1: BestBuy IPTV and Le Hai Nam Copyright Infringement

On April 23, 2024, the Hanoi People’s Court sentenced Le Hai Nam, operator of the BestBuy IPTV service, to a 30-month suspended prison term and fined him 100 million VND (about 4,000 USD) for online copyright infringement. Additionally, the court confiscated 615 million VND (about 24,000 USD) in illegal profits and ordered Nam to pay 300 million VND (about 12,000 USD) in compensation, as stipulated in the indictment.

Over the past five years, BestBuy IPTV has been repeatedly listed in the “Notorious Markets List for counterfeit and pirated goods” by the Office of the US Trade Representative (USTR). The service has illegally streamed sports events, television shows, and movies to consumers both in Vietnam and globally.

The criminal verdict in the BestBuy IPTV case serves not only as a wake-up call and a stern warning but also sends a drastic message about zero tolerance for copyright infringement on the Internet. This verdict is evidence of Vietnam’s strong efforts to comply with international legal standards, particularly in the field of information and communications technology. It demonstrates Vietnam’s commitment to effectively protecting and enforcing intellectual property rights.

Case 2: Pirated Movie Distribution Network Operated by Phan Ngoc Tuan and His Accomplices

On January 9, 2024, Quang Binh Provincial Police prosecuted Phan Ngoc Tuan and two accomplices for ‘Infringement of copyright and related rights’ under Article 225 of the 2015 Penal Code. Investigations revealed that since around 2019, this group has been purchasing source codes to edit and operate three websites –,, and -without the producers’ or copyright owners’ permission. They broadcast and distributed movies to generate illegal profits through advertising, earning between 80 and 100 million VND per month.

Case 3: Criminal Prosecution Against Website

On August 19, 2021, the Ho Chi Minh City Police Investigation Agency prosecuted a criminal case for copyright infringement involving the website This action marks a significant step in addressing film copyright infringement in Vietnam. has previously ranked among the top 20 most-visited websites in Vietnam, with an estimated 60-100 million visits per month. It hosts a vast collection of films across all genres, both old and new, totaling 3,830 movie titles and 2,697 TV series. This includes newly released Hollywood movies and some films not released elsewhere globally. Considered an international hub for copyright piracy in film, has also faced criticism from many countries for serious copyright violations. According to SimilarWeb statistics, it ranked 13th among the websites most visited by Vietnamese people in 2019 and stands at 832nd worldwide, placing 27th among global entertainment industry websites.

Most of Phimmoi’s advertising revenue comes from Skimlinks (31.65%), MGID (30.40%), Propeller Ads Media (23.62%), and PopAds (14.33%). These networks, which generate online advertising revenue and are based abroad, present challenges in addressing violations due to jurisdictional issues. Estimates suggest that with 60 million visits per month, Phimmoi can earn approximately $120,000 in revenue, equivalent to about 2.7 billion VND from advertising.

Final thoughts

The three typical cases mentioned above demonstrate significant advances in Vietnam’s fight against copyright infringement. They also reflect the determination and resilience of Vietnamese law enforcement agencies. Furthermore, these cases not only strengthen the legal framework but also reaffirm Vietnam’s commitment to meeting international standards on intellectual property rights protection. Each case carries a punitive nature and opens up new visions and directions in combating pirated websites, helping to deter those who profit illegally and prevent similar violations.

KENFOX IP & Law Office, with extensive practical experience and expertise, has successfully supported many IP rights holders in enforcing their IP rights. If you need professional representation to effectively address IP infringements in Vietnam, please contact us.

By Nguyen Vu QUAN

Partner & IP Attorney