A Los Angeles federal grand jury has indicted 12 people suspected of being involved in a $60-million software counterfeiting ring believed to have been run by Asian gangs in Orange County.
Westminster police and the FBI are expected to disclose the names of the defendants today, sources said.
Local and federal investigators raided several warehouses in Long Beach and Paramount in February, and found tens of thousands of fake copies of Microsoft Corp. products.
Investigators seized a $1.5-million commercial CD-ROM replicator, stacks of fake Microsoft authorization certificates and user manuals, printing plates used to print the manuals, and at least four "master" software disks, each of which could be used to reproduce as many as 40,000 CDs a year.
Despite international efforts to curb high-tech theft, sales of counterfeit software continue to plague the computer industry, which lost $11 billion worldwide to piracy, according to a recent study by the industry trade group Business Software Alliance.