After making 23 million dollars in false royalties, Jose Teran has been sentenced to six years in prison. Here's how the elaborate scamming scheme came to be and how it burned to the ground.
You know how before most music videos on YouTube you have to sit through one or two ads? And do you also know the liberating feeling when once in a blue moon the song just starts to play without any advertisement?
- Speaking of ad-free stuff: how about a free-trial Amazon Prime membership?
Well, Jose Teran made his own business out of that. Finding songs on YouTube that hadn't been monetized yet and claiming the royalties from them as his own, he made over 23 million dollars.
An Elaborate Scheme Got Him Sent To Prison
Over the course of five years Teran found more and more songs to claim and make money off the backs of the various artists.
What may sound like a side hustle at first was actually a well-thought-out scam. Before he got busted, he even created a company called MediaMuv and hired employees for hunting unclaimed royalties on YouTube, basically abusing YouTube's copyright claim system.
The IRS started investigating in 2019 until in 2021 they had enough evidence to stop Teran and his company. With multiple bank accounts, false names and even more fake companies to "collaborate with", the IRS needed two years to make their case.
The verdict: six years in prison for Teran. I'm not sure if the Lamborghini was worth six years of his life.
Nothing scammy going on at EarlyGame's YouTube:
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