Home » Nollywood Star Toyin Abraham Opens Up About Panic Attacks and Hospitalization Due to Movie Piracy

Nollywood Star Toyin Abraham Opens Up About Panic Attacks and Hospitalization Due to Movie Piracy

Actress Toyin Abraham speaks out as police arrest five suspects in the piracy case of her film 'Malaika'

by Ikeoluwa Juliana Ogungbangbe

Renowned Nollywood actress Toyin Abraham has bravely opened up about the crippling anxiety and panic attacks she endured as a result of rampant piracy of her film works. This revelation came on the heels of the Nigerian police announcing the arrest of five suspects connected to the piracy of her movie ‘Malaika.’

Speaking at a press conference in Lagos, Abraham shared her ordeal, shedding light on the devastating personal toll piracy took on her. “I had panic attacks, was hospitalised due to piracy,” she declared, emphasizing the severe emotional and psychological strain piracy had inflicted on her.

The actress disclosed that she had invested a staggering ₦500 million in the production of ‘Malaika,’ making it a particularly painful blow when her creative work was exploited unlawfully.

In a determined stance, Abraham has taken up the fight against piracy, not only for her own benefit but for the entire entertainment industry. Her decision to speak out resonates with countless creatives who grapple with the menace of piracy daily.

Applauding the Nigerian police for their swift action, Abraham expressed her gratitude through Assistant Inspector General (AIG) Idowu Owohunwa, who represented the police at the press conference. The arrest of the five suspects signifies a step in the right direction, signalling a commitment to combating piracy in the Nigerian entertainment landscape.

The Federal Criminal Investigation Department (FCID), Alagbon, Ikoyi Lagos, disclosed earlier that they had apprehended five suspects, including two women, in connection with the alleged piracy of ‘Malaika.’ The suspects face accusations of conspiracy, infringement on intellectual property, piracy, and cyber-related crimes related to the unlawful distribution of the film through cyberspace.

ASP Aminat Mayegun, spokesperson for the FCID, paraded the suspects before the press, highlighting the seriousness of the charges. The investigation was initiated following a criminal complaint filed jointly by Toyin Abraham and Seun Olayemi, the co-producer of ‘Malaika.’

The complainants alleged that unscrupulous individuals had criminally pirated their recent movie, which was initially intended for cinematic release only on December 21, 2023. The alleged culprits had illegally gained access to the film, uploaded it on their website, and created a streaming weblink for their global social media followers to freely watch.

Mayegun emphasized that the complainants accused the suspects of violating their intellectual property rights, thereby depriving them of their rightful profits while illicitly benefiting from the film.

In response to the petition, a joint investigation involving the Special Investigation Units of the Anti-Fraud and Cybercrime Sections of the Department was promptly launched. The Nigerian police deployed their unique intelligence and cybercrime resources to full effect in their pursuit of justice.

The collaboration between law enforcement agencies and the entertainment industry represents a significant step towards curbing piracy. AIG Idowu Owohunwa reaffirmed the police’s unwavering commitment to working alongside movie industry stakeholders and the Nigerian Copyright Commission to eliminate criminal elements in the industry.

Toyin Abraham’s courage in sharing her personal struggle with piracy shines a spotlight on an issue that affects countless artists. With the recent arrests and the determination of industry leaders, there is hope that piracy’s grip on the Nigerian entertainment scene will finally begin to loosen.

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