UK Raid Seizes 1,800 Flash Cartridges


South Wales Police raided a store in Cardiff seizing 1,800 Nintendo DS flash carts. The devices can be used for playing pirated games or running homebrew software. In the UK, the carts are illegal under the Trademarks and Copyright Acts. The 21-year-old suspect had imported the devices and was selling them both online and in-store. He had over 1,000 devices in his home. Many of them packed and ready to ship. Official statements by the Entertainment and Leisure Publishers Association claim that the hardware irreparably damages the DS handhelds.

[via Joystiq]

46 thoughts on “UK Raid Seizes 1,800 Flash Cartridges

  1. irreparably damages the DS? You serious? I’m feeling that if it does, then its a security glitch that bricks it in response to the cart. Or its just BS Nintendo UK lawyers come up with.

  2. the thing that pisses me off the most is that they are against homebrew. homebrew is legit and it encourages people to learn to code… if i code a game for the ds i have done nothing wrong, but if nintendo has their say then i should be givin the gas chamber… nazis

  3. Never let the brits have any video games. For the same reason we threw all that tea in the water, they should toss their irreparably damaged ds handhelds in the water. Sure the ds would sink faster, and leak more toxins into the water, but it would send a message to Nintendo. (almost didn’t capitalize Nintendo out of spite)

  4. This guys mistake was preloading them with roms. He is a software pirate and was dealt with accordingly. however, this does not make the action taken by police okay, they should have only confiscated those carts which were loaded with commercial software. rather unfortunately the device itself is an illegal item under british law.

    @blizzrddemon, gabe, the DSTT _DOES_ damage damage the dslite, but not irreparably. On some of the carts the contacts are spaced with a little less precision, due to about half that are shipped being fakes/knockoffs. this causes a short inside the connector slot blowing one or both of the internal smd fuses inside the ds. This is an easy fix. the real issue is that if you look at an authentic ds cart, there are pin centering ‘channels’ to ensure positive placement of the pins on the cart, on flash carts theses ‘channels’ are either half-height or missing entirely. the simple solution is to remove the casing from an official cart and stuff it with the flash cart electronics.

  5. “Official statements by the Entertainment and Leisure Publishers Association claim that the hardware irreparably damages the DS handhelds”

    Why why why why why do they always have to pad these stories with a lie. If the cartridges are illegal, and even if the law is retarded (which it is, then why do they feel the need to pad on something the discredit their own actions.

    How about this, “authorities became concerned when the owner would change into a zombie-werewolf at night and feed on cadavers at the local mortuary”

  6. The newer Flash Carts are kind of closer to outright illegality since they actually contain code which is a product of reverse-engineering the lockout mechanisms of the DS. Older First-gen Slot 1 cards Really weren’t anything but the IC, and firmware had to be loaded from the Transflash. It might be kinda like how some console modchips are loaded with an open-source BIOS that can’t boot copied games.

    But, that’s just what I think.

  7. The biggest problem with this that I have is that if I brick my DS or my PSP or fry my PS2 then its my problem. I spent a lot of money for what is essentially a crippled system, if I can use homebrew to do what I want then it’s my prerogative. Now i can understand if they were preloaded with roms, that’s blatant piracy, and should be dealt with accordingly, but homebrew is not illegal or breaking of copyright laws its just using something you own to do something it was not meant to do with original software or hardware, since I physically own this thing I should be able to change it break it or mess with it in any way i see fit. If we let them condemn the homebrew scene, then its one short step from being sued for doing home repair, or ordering replacement parts.

  8. Haha, I got my R4DS simply by getting my cousin to import one from the lovely pirates’ paradise of Indonesia (I’m English), cost me all of £10. Also, British authorities have been “clamping down” on selling these things when you can pick one up easily from I’m thinking that the Establishment will turn a blind eye to corporations violating their own stupid laws (and it is a very stupid law) but kick any poor freelance sod in the arse given the oppurtunity.

    And I thought Britain was above all of this DMCA-style bullshit. My respect for the Government is waning.

  9. [pouncer] was close, they were actually afraid the kids would grind the flash carts up and smoke them, thus installing the pirate software in their brains!

    Then they’d have no choice but to confiscate them surgically. Not like the cart-smokers would miss them anyway, it would make their head easier to hold up, right?

  10. So instead of Nintendo adding a flash drive to the DS and perhaps some decent memory they are going to let their product die off with Intel Atom powered tablet PC’s. Good choice Nintendo, ignore the innovations of your consumers.

  11. Nintendo is just playing stupid. Piracy made Commodore sell C64 by millions. If Nintendo knew what is good for him it would allow free download of limited crippled trial games and would offer flash carts for free. I would call that *fair use* right.

    That would kill the need for the piracy and would be the best marketing ever.

  12. well if nintendo just came up with a proper internet browser cart for their DS/lite then this wouldn’t be an issue. Personally I say just ditch their overpriced junky mainboard and roll your own that fits into the existing case. A bonus if you got your DS wet and its an expensive brick.

    You can probably buy most of the parts online already, and the DS’s touch screen is a standard part so should be easy to drive.


  13. the cards dos not damage to the consoles that is what they wont you to think and if you are playing homebrew that is not wrong and in the us you can not get in to trubull for playing homebrew and use the r4 cards they are so much bater.

  14. Hacking is freedom eh ? I guess,when somebody hacks your bank account,the it wouldn’t be freedom anymore,eh?

    But i do agree, flashcarts alone do NO harm.Selling them is your business.Why are guns allowed then? (in my country is different – no guns allowed to civilians exceptions taken for those who got some sort of death threats and must hold a licence.period)

    I also tried a sony SD card and it loaded my NDS roms in the main menu. I can also get some radio transmissions.I read in another post,another person had similar experience.

  15. ForgetAboutit: weird… I can load all the roms as if the games were original from a local-brand SD card named; Kurac-Pizda (KP)23i …it sells for like 5 EUR.Well i did modify it with Jebemti Mater hack ;)

  16. you realize that the Microsoft and the like would love nothing more than to extend this to pcs by locking out and outlawing any non-commercial software. the scary thing is os software and cpu hardware is pursuing just that under the guise of drm.

  17. hmmm. yep as far as i can see amazon are still breakin the law! and how come the flashcard makers havent been targeted? i have an r4 (amazon) and a cyclo (much better) and nobody came to me in a hurry with the handcuffs. admittedly if he was selling them with the roms thats not so good but if it was homebrew… as many others have explained WTF!

    cheap ass government (uk)

  18. If they make nds flash cartridges illegal then why not make blank dvd’s and Cd’s illegal too?????? those are the main source of pirating lmfao it would be retarded wouldn’t it??!!! therefore making the ban of flash cartridges RETARDED!!!! anyone who disagrees go pour yourself a big tall glass of shut the fuck up!!!!

  19. irreparably damages them my sack. Maybe if nintendo didnt make such shitty games for their nintendos (“angel cat sugar kitty” and any game in the “petz” series are prime examples) people wouldn’t be making flashcarts like these to play games like fatal relations, half-elf tentacle assault, or pokemon ghost black.
    Get a clue nintendo.
    At least with the skank in pokemon black and white they’re starting to realize that the people who play their game HAVE NUT HAIR.

  20. The “damage” to the system is referring to the profit of the market. So if I was ‘harming’ the NES in this sense, it means that I was ruining the market and sustainability of further development.

    Yes, it’s not what a lot of people think of as damage. They get a system that works BETTER than what the designers meant for it to! ;)

  21. Big friggin deal. These people’s lives have been turned upside down, but hey, get a free repair! Get real apple. If you want to help then put your hand in your pocket and donate cash

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