Warner Bros targets hundreds of Amazon sellers over DVD piracy

Warner Bros (s twx) studio is filing a wave of copyright lawsuits across the country against individuals who are using Amazon (s amzn) to sell pirated versions of shows like True Blood and The Wire.

While the lawsuit campaign has been underway for several years, the studio has lately become much more aggressive. A review of court records shows that Warner Bros has filed nearly 50 cases against Amazon sellers in the last three months alone, compared to only a handful of such suits in 2010.

The studio, which is the parent of popular network HBO, appears to be targeting organized rings of bootleg sellers. A complaint filed this week in Ohio, for instance, names Ben James, who does business under the Amazon name Wolverines23. But it also lists “John Does 1-10” who are unidentified individuals helping James manufacture and sell DVDs.

Amazon customer reviews for Wolverines23 are generally favorable and include comments like “Brand new DVD!” and “Packaged well and in perfect condition.”

None of the recent Time Warner complaints name Amazon directly.

The complaints ask for damages and an order to seize “screens,” “molds,” “machines” and other equipment related to DVD and packaging operations.

Here’s a sample complaint:

Time Warner v Amazon Sellers