Megaupload's Kim Dotcom loses bid to avoid USA extradition

05 July, 2018, 10:21 | Author: Leah Owens
  • Dotcom had asked the court to overturn two previous rulings that the Megaupload founder and his three co-accused be sent to the United States to face charges

It is now up to New Zealand's Justice Minister Andrew Little to decide whether extradition should take place.

Kim Dotcom says a Court of Appeal ruling that he is eligible for extradition to the United States is "extremely disappointing" and he will appeal to the Supreme Court.

Earlier, his appeal was rejected consecutively by New Zealand's North Shore District Court and the High Court. If handed over to the USA, he and his three co-defendants will face charges of copyright infringement and fraud that resulted in damages to record and film studios to the tune of over $500 million.

In a tweet, the U.S. lawyer, Ira Rothken, says he's disappointed in the outcome and will "seek review" with the Supreme Court.

While, from the legal point of view, Dotcom's future is looking bleaker and his surrender to the USA is looking more likely, just several months ago Dotcom declared his extradition case was over.

"We look forward to seeking review with the New Zealand Supreme Court".

The group can seek leave to appeal the Court of Appeal's judgment to the Supreme Court.

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During the Court of Appeal hearing in February, lawyers for Dotcom and his associates argued the judicial process was flawed and the charges were not valid under extradition law. If found guilty, they could face decades in prison.

One example, the court heard, was the failure to disclose the illegal spying by the Government Communications Security Bureau when applying for an arrest warrant.

If sent to the United States he will face charges of racketeering, fraud and money laundering carrying jail terms of up to 20 years.

Dotcom disputed the court's interpretation of copyright provisions. He changed his last name to Dotcom in 2012.

German-born Dotcom, who has New Zealand residency, became well known for his lavish lifestyle as much as his computer skills.

Mr Dotcom estimates he has spent 165 days in court and spent $40 million in legal fees on the case.

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