Quick resolution not likely in Sklyarov-Adobe case

The Associated Press
Tuesday November 27, 2001

SAN JOSE — A resolution appears unlikely any time soon in the closely watched case of a Russian computer programmer charged with violating copyrights on Adobe Systems Inc. software. 

At a hearing in federal court Monday, prosecutors and attorneys for Dmitry Sklyarov, 27, agreed to file motions in coming months, with pretrial hearings scheduled to begin March 4. 

In the first criminal prosecution under the 1998 Digital Millennium Copyright Act, Sklyarov and his employer, ElcomSoft Co. Ltd. of Moscow, are charged with releasing a program that let readers disable restrictions on Adobe’s electronic-book software. The program is legal in Russia. 

Sklyarov was arrested after speaking at a hacking convention in Las Vegas on July 16. He could face up to five years in prison for each of the five counts against him; he and the company could be fined $500,000. 

Sklyarov’s attorney, John Keker, said he plans to challenge aspects of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act and whether prosecutors here have jurisdiction over Sklyarov and the Russian company. 

Sklyarov is free on $50,000 bail but must remain in Northern California until the case is resolved. He is living with his wife and two young children in an apartment in San Mateo and continuing work on his doctorate in computer science, Keker said.