AFTER NAPSTER, MP3BLAST COMES UNDER ATTACK

Users of www.MP3blast.com have had their homes raided, as the police search for evidence of copyright infringement...

Belgian police have raided the homes of users of an MP3-sharing website, looking for evidence that they have infringed copyright law.

The BBC reports that a police inquiry into the Napster alternative www.MP3blast.com led to the raid of a home at the end of December, followed by two more last month.

Marcel Heymans, who is the director general of the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) in Belgium, said he informed police of the potential infringements, and that the raids came against people who had been “clearly warned yet persevered” with downloading music.

It is also reported that Belgian police are currently reviewing the cases of four Napster users.

At present, MP3blast.com appears to have suspended its service. A message on the site reads: “We’re currently outta (sic) town”, and provides a link to www.mp3charts.com.

NME.COM contacted the IFPI in England for comment. A spokesperson said the action was taken against people who they believe had been uploading material “day and night”.

He added that the IFPI in the UK are “in the business of clearing Internet piaracy” and plan to “aggressively target large-volume piracy”. However, he said their current priority is not to target “the casual downloader”.