Megaupload: final setback for Kim Dotcom against his extradition from New Zealand
Steph Deschamps / December 21, 2021
New Zealand's highest court on Tuesday rejected Kim Dotcom's latest appeal against his extradition to the United States, where the Megaupload.com founder is accused of industrial-scale piracy.
The Supreme Court in Wellington rejected the appeal of the German national and two of his co-defendants, brushing aside their argument that they faced a miscarriage of justice. We do not think that the court should do anything further with respect to the proposed appeals, given our conclusion that there has been no miscarriage of justice, a three-judge panel concluded. The German giant suspected of embezzling millions of dollars with its iconic online download platform is charged in the U.S. with fraud, racketeering and money laundering, and its founder faces up to 20 years in prison. It was the last resort of the Internet magnate, whose real name is Kim Schmitz, almost ten years after a spectacular raid by New Zealand police at the request of the FBI in the Dotcom Mansion, his lavish property in Auckland, in January 2012.
During the long battle that followed, the New Zealand justice system rendered judgments against the German and his three co-accused, Mathias Ortmann, Bram van der Kolk and Finn Batato, against whom the charges were dropped. The 47-year-old reacted with indifference on social networks to his latest judicial setback. Not impressed, he tweeted. Kim Dotcom and his co-defendants are suspected of having made $175 million in illegal profits from their activities and caused more than half a billion dollars in losses to the rights holders of pirated music, movies and other products. Megaupload was closed by the U.S. justice. The defendants are defending themselves from any infringement. Kim Dotcom claims that the proceedings were orchestrated by the administration of former President Barack Obama to please the powerful in Hollywood. Megaupload was one of the first examples of cloud computing, where users can upload files stored on servers making them easily available for download. At its peak in 2011, Megaupload claimed 50 million daily users, and 4% of global internet traffic.