The audacious online music download venture ZookZ, which tried to take advantage of a World Trade Organisation IP ruling in favour of Antigua after an online gambling dispute involving the United States (see earlier InfoPowa reports) is no more.

The now inoperable website bears the notice: "ZookZ website is temporarily not operating due to circumstances beyond our control and we are sorry you can't get the music and movies you love at this time.

"Due to this interruption, ZookZ is returning all membership fees paid to date by our existing customers. Your business is greatly appreciated and we look forward to getting you the best movies and music again soon.

"ZookZ would like to thank its loyal customers, supporters and the people of Antigua for their continued support and understanding as ZookZ moves to return to full-service."

Operating from Antigua, the island government's quick disavowal of the company earlier this week and the threat of an investigation possibly lie behind the closure.

Lawyer William Pepper, speaking on behalf of ZookZ, gave a very simplified history of the IP advantage which the WTO gave to Antigua, concluding that the only way the Government of Antigua could derive any benefits from the WTO award would be through the trading done by companies in Antigua.

"ZookZ is the property of Carib Media Ltd. a company registered and conducting business in the State of Antigua and Barbuda, West Indies," he claimed. "Therefore there is nothing that requires ZookZ to seek authorization from the WTO or the Government of Antigua to transact its business."

Perhaps he was wrong.

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