39-year-old Bristolian, Neil Higgs – aka Mr Mod Chips – has won a landmark appeal against a legal case brought against him last year for selling console modchips.

At the time of the initial case in October 2007, Bristol Crown Court found Higgs guilty of 26 copyright offences. 

Millionaire geek

Following that ruling, The Sun referred to Higgs as a “computer geek who made £1million selling illegal video game chips from his bedroom” and ELSPA’s Michael Rawlinson, noted that it marked “a milestone in the fight against piracy.”

No longer a grey area

Gamespot now reports this week that the legal case against Higgs has now been dropped and that the defendant has been awarded full costs, “opening up the possibility that modding may now be legal in the UK.”

Team Xecuter explains that: "The granting of this appeal based on the argument that the copyright infringement has already taken place before the use of a modchip has resulted in the squashing of all 26 counts." The appeal was heard by Judge Justice Jacobs.

Mr Mod Chips’ Web site is currently sporting a photo of Winston Churchill flicking the victory sign.

TechRadar has contacted ELSPA for further comment on the matter.