Judge reduces damages in illegal file sharing caseby Bob Kelleher, Minnesota Public Radio
Brainerd, Minn. — A federal judge has drastically reduced the damages a Brainerd woman must pay for illegally copying music.
Under the order by Judge Michael Davis, Jammie Thomas-Rasset, a married mother of four, would have to pay only $54,000, a fraction of the $1.9 million a jury awarded recording companies last year.
In his opinion, Davis said he wanted to fashion a damage award that "does not veer into the realm of gross injustice."
The judge also denied Rasset's request for a new trial in the case.
Rasset says she's happy with the reduced judgment, but noted that $54,000 is still a lot of money.
"It's easier for me to wrap my brain around $54,000 than $1.92 million," said Rasset. "Obviously, I still won't be able to come up with 54 grand to pay this off. But that's a decision that I, right at this moment, I still don't have to make."
A spokeswoman for the Recording Industry Association of America said she's still reviewing the decision and declined to comment.
The judge gave the recording industry a week to accept the change or schedule a new trial to determine damages.