Behind the Fence sued over allegedly illegal broadcasting of UFC fight

By Hoang Tran | Feb 17, 2016

LAFAYETTE – A licensor of sporting events is taking a local bar to court over what it claims was an unlawful access to its television program.

Joe Hand Promotions Inc. filed lawsuit Feb. 11 in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Louisiana, Lafayette Division against Behind the Fence LLC, Amy Felecie’ Hebert and James Wheaton for alleged violations of the Communications Act of 1934 and the Cable and Television Consumer Protection and Competition Act of 1992.

The plaintiff alleges that on Feb. 23, 2013, Hebert and Wheaton specifically and willfully took actions on behalf of Behind the Fence to unlawfully intercept and broadcast Joe Hand’s Program on their premises in Port Barre. The said program was alleged to be the “Ultimate Fighting Championship 157: Rhonda Rousey v. Liz Carmouche” show, to which plaintiff allegedly had the exclusive nationwide commercial distribution and broadcasting rights.

Joe Hand Promotions alleges that the defendants took steps to unlawfully broadcast the fight on their property using either a residential account with a television service provider, a blackbox hotbox, a smartcard, a cable drop or splice from an apartment, or the use of an illegal decryption device. It asserts that the illegal signal swiping has caused it damages.

Joe Hand is now suing for statutory damages of $60,000, court costs, attorney fees, and any other reward deemed just by the court. It is represented by Ronnie J. Berthelot from The Berthelot Law Firm LLC in Baton Rouge.

U.S. District Court for the Western District of Louisiana Case number 6:16-cv-00196-RFD-CBW

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