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The Pirate Bay website has been taken offline following a police raid in Sweden.

Swedish police seized servers in Stockholm after a complaint was filed by a group targeting internet crime.

It is the first time in several years the pirated content website has been taken offline rather than simply blocked by filters.

Unexpectedly, The Pirate Bay‘s co-founder Peter Sunde – who is no longer involved – called for its permanent closure.

Swedish police have confirmed the raid, which took place after the complaint from the Rights Alliance.

As well as servers being removed from the data centre for examination, several people were now being interviewed by police.

The police operation took place in an area in Nacka, south-east of Stockholm. The area’s mountainous terrain is used as a natural cooling system for computer servers.The Pirate Bay goes offline

According to Torrent Freak, a website that reports on news about piracy and copyright law, a number of smaller torrent websites, or sites related to the activity, had also gone down.

Various reports on December 10 suggested that the site had returned with a Costa Rican web address.

However, this site appeared to be a “mirror” – meaning copy – of the real site, and search functionality did not work.

The Pirate Bay has operated for over 10 years, and in that time has become a focus for the creative industry’s war on copyright infringement. It is one of the internet’s most-visited websites, and the movie, music and software industries blame it for losses running into billions of pounds.

Despite The Pirate Bay‘s operators being convicted of copyright violations, authorities have struggled to stop the site from operating.

The Swedish raid steps up the effort to stop people reaching The Pirate Bay by knocking the site itself offline, although for how long is unclear.

In 2012, The Pirate Bay announced it was to move its site to the cloud – internet-based storage, which can be shared across a variety of locations – so that raids would apparently be ineffective.