Two Doncaster nightspots have been banned from playing recorded tunes - after they were targeted by the music licence ‘police’.
A High Court judge in London has imposed the sound of silence on Timothy Roidl, proprietor of the Loaded Late Bar, in Printing Office Street, and Matthew Brooks, who runs Mood in Priory Walk.
The court was told Mr Brooks was caught playing recorded copyrighted music when he didn’t have a licence from music royalties collector Phonographic Performance Ltd.
Mr Brooks, who was not in court and unrepresented, was ordered to pay £1,628 in legal costs in the next 14 days.
The ban also extends to any other premises Brooks runs until he brings his licence up to date.
If he does not comply he could end up behind bars, as failure to obey the order and turn any premises he runs into a music-free zone until all licence fees are brought up to date would be regarded as contempt of court.
The penalties can be fines of up to £10,000 and up to six months in prison.
The judge heard that he was caught when a PPL inspector visited the premises in October – two months after a swoop on the Loaded Late Bar.
PPL’s counsel William Duncan said solicitors had sent letters to the premises informing Mr Brooks of the fact that the playing in public of sound recordings without PPL’s licence or permission constitutes infringement of its copyright, and inviting him to acquire a licence.
The ban applies to all forms of mechanically recorded music such as records, tapes and CDs in PPL’s repertoire.