The music industry's efforts to tackle Latin music piracy are paying off.

The music industry's efforts to tackle Latin music piracy are paying off.

The RIAA today (May 11) released its physical-goods piracy roundup for 2003, revealing that its new beefed-up initiatives resulted in a 40% increase in seizures of counterfeit Latin product, compared to 2002.

Piracy is a "disproportionate problem for the Latin music genre," says Brad Buckles, executive VP/director of anti-piracy at the RIAA.

Overall seizures of counterfeit and pirate CD-Rs again topped 5 million units in 2003. The RIAA's Anti-Piracy Unit made a sizable dent, seizing 1.4 million pirated Latin-music recordings.

"We are working with law enforcement to bring down major piracy kingpins producing counterfeit product, and targeting areas where this music is especially rampant -- flea markets, retail outlets and on the street," says Buckles.

Last year, the RIAA dedicated $2.5 million in funds toward fighting Latin-music piracy in the United States. The organization estimates between 30%-40% of all Latin music sold in the United States is counterfeit.

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