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Sunday, July 8, 2012

New Zealand Police Investigated over MegaUpload’s Founder Arrest

The country is currently conducting a judicial review as to how its police ended up carrying out a bizarre unauthorized raid on Kim Dotcom, the cyberlocker’s owner. The officers who carried out the police raids on Dotcom’s house will have to take the stand in order to give evidence for the judicial review.

So far it is known that the warrants were issued on behalf of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, which in its turn was acting as enforcer for the US entertainment industry. However, the warrants were ruled illegal last week by High Court judge. The latter also claimed that it was against the law to take the copies of Kim’s personal computer to the United States.

According to the local media, Kim Dotcom requires an independent lawyer to pass through the seized evidence and give all irrelevant content back to him. The authorities of the United States have charged Kim Dotcom and three of his colleagues in the United States with numerous copyright offences and are currently trying to extradite him. Meanwhile, Dotcom’s lawyers want an independent lawyer to be appointed by the court to go through the evidence and decide which of its part is important.

Crown lawyer John Pike, appearing for the Attorney General, agreed that sorting the mess out wasn’t simple, with part of the problem being that the Crown was working for a foreign government.

The US is worried that allowing for an independent barrister it would give him “disproportionate authority”. It means that they fear he won’t let them have evidence which they really need to make a case against the MegaUpload founder.

The important part of the problem is that this case is “breaking new ground” in extradition legislation in the country. First of all, the judicial review of the search warrants’ legality is an entirely new feature of an extradition case. Secondly, another decision by a district court judge to allow disclosure to Kim Dotcom meant that the suspects suddenly have more rights now: at least, they can hear what evidence the authorities have against them to ruin their life.

Of course, the Feds are appealing this point – they believe that such governments as New Zealand’s one must turn over any person the US names as a suspect to face a kangaroo court in the United States without presenting any evidence.

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