"... penalties for those caught mass-producing and selling illegally produced DVDs remains the same ... a $1 million fine and five years' imprisonment. That's a hefty punishment, but is it ever handed out? "
please, does the underlined expression mean "enforced" or "put into practice" in this sentence?
Understand that such fines are 'a maximum', usual phrased as :
These offences attract a maximum fine of $60500 and up to 5 years in ...
A maximum fine of $250000 applies to each offence, except violations of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, which carry a maximum fine of $500000. ...
Such maximum fines might be handed out for some commercial bootleg operation turning out thousands of pirated copies per week; whereas someone copying a DVD and giving it to a friend might possibly be given a caution by the police and it never go to court. If it did, then the fine might be $250.
It is the LAW against breaches of copyright which is enforced by charging offenders and taking them to court. Penalties/fines are then handed out', and the severity depends on the degree to which the law is being breached, as stated above.