Kim Dotcom Denied Access to US Extradition Evidence by NZ Top Court

Kim Dotcom Denied Access to US Extradition Evidence by NZ Top Court

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"Being defeated is often a temporary condition," says Dotcom. "Giving up is what makes it permanent."

Kim Dotcom has suffered a major reverse in his bid to stave off US extradition. In a 4 to 1 ruling, the New Zealand Supreme Court has said that Dotcom may not have access to the US evidence against him and his co-defendants. All of Dotcom's data was taken away in the January 2012 armed raid on his property, and it's that data which US authorities are relying on to make their case. After the raid the FBI took possession, and once that happened there was no chance of getting it back to prepare a defence, unless NZ courts compelled it. The extradition hearing is set for July 2014.

"The US has been given a free ride to cherry pick whatever allegations they want," says Ira Rothken, Dotcom's American lawyer. "Now, there's not an even playing field in the extradition proceeding." Chief Justice Sian Elias cast the dissenting vote, arguing that the law as written required that a defendant has a right to access to the documents relied on to establish an extradition charge. Any deficiency had to be fixed, Elias went on to argue, if the Minister wished to rely on those documents to prove an extradition case.

Dotcom's not happy right now, but takes comfort in the Chief Justice's dissenting vote. He's not giving up yet, and has already pledged to appeal against the court ruling that said the raid on his mansion was legal.

Should the US extradition proceed, Dotcom - and his three co-accused Finn Batato, Mathias Ortmann and Bram Van der Kolk - will face copyright infringement allegations, as well as money laundering, racketeering and wire fraud charges.

Source: Ars Technica

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Wait, what? How is this even remotely legal?
I don't know a lot about the law or other legal matters, but I thought you should always get access to the material used for the accusation against you. How else are you supposed to build a defence?

Ugh, it's things like this that make me hate the US. They're doing whatever they want in places they have no authority over, simply because everyone is too afraid to stand up against them.

I don't want to get into the specifics of the case, but not being allowed to see evidence against you seems like the sort of thing you get in nasty dictatorships and failed states. That the New Zealand supreme court is allowing it reflects badly on their entire judicial system and any sense of fairness.

Have they been to the USA and committed a crime on US soil, or have they committed a crime by US law on US servers? If not then what right does the USA have to extradite any of them? If they have committed crimes and it's on New Zealand soil, then New Zealand have the right to prosecute, and no-one else. As such I find myself forced to question the legality of the extradition proceedings in the first place.

That being said, the USA tried the exact same thing on a British guy who had never even been to the USA, but was still committing crimes (on British servers) related to copyright theft. I think he did end up being extradited, again without any actual legal basis to do so...

Theminimanx:
Wait, what? How is this even remotely legal?
I don't know a lot about the law or other legal matters, but I thought you should always get access to the material used for the accusation against you. How else are you supposed to build a defence?

Ugh, it's things like this that make me hate the US. They're doing whatever they want in places they have no authority over, simply because everyone is too afraid to stand up against them.

You do. When a case is formally presented the defendant is given all evidence that is going to be introduced into a trial. The defendant/suspect however does not have a right to a constant update to an investigation being conducted against them as it takes place.

Kim is being extradited to stand trial, the actual trial has yet to be set up, but when it is his defense team will be given details on the case being used.

The reasons for this are manifold, during an investigation where information is being collected it's not entirely sure what stuff is going to check out and be useful and what isn't. What's more knowledge of an ongoing investigation can make it easy for a suspect (or an accomplice) to interfere.

Right now, what your looking at is the point in say a TV drama where the police detectives would have suspects, but are investigating the crimes based on a strong chain of evidence, and gathering information. The situation here is simply complicated by it being international. All the US has really done at this point is gotten permission to investigate Kim's records and data trail, with the intention of building a case and extraditing him. Kim hasn't actually been put on trial yet, and when he is put on trial, he's entitled to know what the evidence being used by the prosecution is. It's unlikely that Kim was a national security threat, so he's not going to have to worry about the whole "spy court" thing where say an undercover agent/mole provided the information, or making the case one way or another would involve information not open to the general public for security matters. That's typically where these kinds of things get touchy, but this is nothing like that.

Right now New Zealand is in an awkward situation because Kim is pretty much a known criminal, he pretty much admits it himself half the time (or did), he got into this position for being flamboyant. He however pays a lot of money into the New Zealand government one way or another, as a result the system there has been trying to protect him, despite a rather straightforward situation and extradition agreement. To be honest if it was most people, this would have been over already. It's less a matter of the US being "dirty", when they are pretty much conducting the case like any other, and more a matter of the very rich being able to flaunt the justice system to a ridiculous extent.

At any rate, as I said a couple of times already, don't let the rhetoric fool you. This is just an investigation like any other right now. It's doubtful the US has even decided what evidence they are going to present at the trial yet. What's more technically at this stage of the game the investigation could potentially lead to the charges being dropped if in going through Kim's systems they don't find any evidence of wrong doing (that does happen). Truthfully one of the reasons why extradition came up so early is because Kim has a big mouth, had he shut up instead of grand standing instead of sitting there for years going "hahahaha, I'm above the law" and taking it to the point of having his name literally changed to "Kim Dotcom" they might not have had reason to start pushing extradition immediately. In his case we've already got what's tantamount to confessions going back years. Kingpins who are smart about it, like say mob bosses, are generally fairly subtle in public, which is why it's a big deal to get one actually saying he does anything illegal. Capone, Gotti, etc... they were just businessmen as far as they would say. Since Kim was in another country if he did something similar, or perhaps kept Megaupload a lot more low key in what it was doing doing, he might not have wound up here.... and really, think long and hard about who your defending here, the US government might not be angels, but in this case they are undeniably right for once.

Yea lets allow government blanket authority to confiscate sift through and take whatever they want and never bother to tell you, oh wait they are doing that now to ever citizen in this country.

Its not legal, it should never be allowed in a free society, we should not be doing to ourselves we should not be doing it to others.

build a case, do your work, file the proper warrents suponeas, file the proper discovery.

the united states government is a monster that must be stopped at this point our executive branch is so out of bounds its mind boggling. our top cop in the nation picks and choose what laws he wants to follow and what laws he wants to enforce at his whim illegally. they use the irs to go after enemies, they used the nsa to mass gather data on everyone in secret.

wake the hell up america.

and no matter how criminal you think mr dotcom is he still has a preseumption of innocence in the court system or should, and he should have access to the evidence against him and as far as i know they dont even know what all they took out of his place.

nm the fact this whole thing is a total and complete payoff to the riaa and mpaa that wants the big bad pirate guy. and they send the fbi swat team to nz to do it because the riaa and mpaa writes big checks and the in"justice" department obeys.

Aaaaand more money will change hands and he'll be extradited for reasons that fall well outside the law. He will then be taken to the US and either found guilty in a bullshit trial, or just thrown in prison indefinitely without trial.

Calling it now.

Should the US extradition proceed, Dotcom - and his three co-accused Finn Batato, Mathias Ortmann and Bram Van der Kolk - will face copyright infringement allegations, as well as money laundering, racketeering and wire fraud charges

Okay, apparently I haven't followed the whole fiasco. Does anyone have a TL;DR on the bolded parts? I take it the copyright stuff is about Megavideo but I have no idea about the rest. Is it because he made money from video hosting and the States want something more than copyright infringement to throw at him?

CriticalMiss:

Should the US extradition proceed, Dotcom - and his three co-accused Finn Batato, Mathias Ortmann and Bram Van der Kolk - will face copyright infringement allegations, as well as money laundering, racketeering and wire fraud charges

Okay, apparently I haven't followed the whole fiasco. Does anyone have a TL;DR on the bolded parts? I take it the copyright stuff is about Megavideo but I have no idea about the rest. Is it because he made money from video hosting and the States want something more than copyright infringement to throw at him?

For the back-of-the-book version: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Megaupload_legal_case .

The back-of-the-teabag version (attach "alleged" to everything as needed): Money laundering comes from him lumping administrative and website hosting costs in with questionably legal file sharing costs so that the damages couldn't be itemized. Racketeering involves his facilitating the illegal exchange and download of media files with multiple people. Wire fraud refers to emails that say files were deleted but actually were not. ... Yeah, they're rather large teabags, but I buy in bulk.

Therumancer:

Theminimanx:
Wait, what? How is this even remotely legal?
I don't know a lot about the law or other legal matters, but I thought you should always get access to the material used for the accusation against you. How else are you supposed to build a defence?

Ugh, it's things like this that make me hate the US. They're doing whatever they want in places they have no authority over, simply because everyone is too afraid to stand up against them.

Snippy.

Again, I didn't know a lot about the law (certainly not US, I live in Europe.) Still, this cleared up a lot of things, so thank you!

Hey fuck both your constitutions! We have to sue you so that antiquated companies can pretend that you were the reason that they didn't make as much money as their delusional minds predicted they would.

I mean the only reason movies like After Earth flop is because of how many people downloaded it online right?...

Yeah let's just skip the kangaroo court and just put a price on his head shall we? 2 billion dollars to whatever politician you want and he'll be extradited against the countries own laws based on an unlawful raid that collected evidence that would be thrown out of any unbribed court.

I think it's perfectly reasonable to not give him all the evidence the US has before the trial. You wouldn't go up to a thief and tell them all the witnesses and evidence you have months before the trial, I don't see how this is any different.

On a completely unrelated note, are there any pictures of Kim Dotcom where he doesn't look kinda smug?

fluxy100:
I think it's perfectly reasonable to not give him all the evidence the US has before the trial. You wouldn't go up to a thief and tell them all the witnesses and evidence you have months before the trial, I don't see how this is any different.

I can't contest the "months before the trial" part, but yes, you would present the thief with the evidence and witnesses against him before the trial. If you didn't, then no defense attorney would ever be able to obtain a verdict of not guilty because he'd be too busy being surprised by everything the prosecution presents during the trial.

Let's proceed with one small example: traditionally, both sides want to conduct their own DNA tests independently to make sure the other is on the level.

cerebus23:
the united states government is a monster that must be stopped at this point our executive branch is so out of bounds its mind boggling. our top cop in the nation picks and choose what laws he wants to follow and what laws he wants to enforce at his whim illegally. they use the irs to go after enemies, they used the nsa to mass gather data on everyone in secret.

They have to pick which laws they want to enforce. There are so many laws passed by congress that its simply impossible to try and enforce them all. You have a limited number of cops do you have them all go out and stop litterbugs or do you have them try and work on murder, theft, arson, drunk driving, child porn, smuggling, drugs, kidnapping, assault and battery, vandalism, etc..., etc..., etc...

Every time the president changes they set new priorities. This one wants to crack down on drugs, this one on porn, this one on terrorism. And they all pick things they no longer want to spend resources fighting because the public no longer supports the law and they don't want to spend all their political capital trying to justify it rather than moving forward their own agendas. This is why when so many states pass laws allowing medical marijuana not all presidents use the federal law enforcement to crack down on dispensaries.

Raziel:

cerebus23:
the united states government is a monster that must be stopped at this point our executive branch is so out of bounds its mind boggling. our top cop in the nation picks and choose what laws he wants to follow and what laws he wants to enforce at his whim illegally. they use the irs to go after enemies, they used the nsa to mass gather data on everyone in secret.

They have to pick which laws they want to enforce. There are so many laws passed by congress that its simply impossible to try and enforce them all. You have a limited number of cops do you have them all go out and stop litterbugs or do you have them try and work on murder, theft, arson, drunk driving, child porn, smuggling, drugs, kidnapping, assault and battery, vandalism, etc..., etc..., etc...

Every time the president changes they set new priorities. This one wants to crack down on drugs, this one on porn, this one on terrorism. And they all pick things they no longer want to spend resources fighting because the public no longer supports the law and they don't want to spend all their political capital trying to justify it rather than moving forward their own agendas. This is why when so many states pass laws allowing medical marijuana not all presidents use the federal law enforcement to crack down on dispensaries.

Wrong the top cop in the nation takes an oath to uphold the laws of the nation not pick and choose.

the attorney general is a criminal. he cannot pick laws he cannot change laws that is congresses job to set the laws not the attoney generals is to enforce them period.

cerebus23:
Wrong the top cop in the nation takes an oath to uphold the laws of the nation not pick and choose.

the attorney general is a criminal. he cannot pick laws he cannot change laws that is congresses job to set the laws not the attoney generals is to enforce them period.

Oh wow... The na´vetÚ of that statement is staggering. Yes the current AG is a criminal, that much I can't dispute. However, there simply aren't enough resources to pursue every criminal. You ever had a list of things you HAD to do in a day and simply run out of time? It's the same concept, but on a national level.

OT- Technically I see nothing wrong here. I'm not sure what the laws are over in NZ but here in the US you are only entitled to the evidence once you are arrested AND charged with a crime. An extradition is neither an arrest or a charge.

Trivun:
Have they been to the USA and committed a crime on US soil, or have they committed a crime by US law on US servers? If not then what right does the USA have to extradite any of them? If they have committed crimes and it's on New Zealand soil, then New Zealand have the right to prosecute, and no-one else. As such I find myself forced to question the legality of the extradition proceedings in the first place.

That being said, the USA tried the exact same thing on a British guy who had never even been to the USA, but was still committing crimes (on British servers) related to copyright theft. I think he did end up being extradited, again without any actual legal basis to do so...

Yeh file or video shack guy, He was not even hosting anything it was just a streaming site with links to other sites. Yeh he still got fucked. Makes me sick our "special relationship" UK and US have ggggrrrrr

Sarge034:

cerebus23:
Wrong the top cop in the nation takes an oath to uphold the laws of the nation not pick and choose.

the attorney general is a criminal. he cannot pick laws he cannot change laws that is congresses job to set the laws not the attoney generals is to enforce them period.

Oh wow... The na´vetÚ of that statement is staggering. Yes the current AG is a criminal, that much I can't dispute. However, there simply aren't enough resources to pursue every criminal. You ever had a list of things you HAD to do in a day and simply run out of time? It's the same concept, but on a national level.

OT- Technically I see nothing wrong here. I'm not sure what the laws are over in NZ but here in the US you are only entitled to the evidence once you are arrested AND charged with a crime. An extradition is neither an arrest or a charge.

it not a qestion of resources of course administration pick focuses bush jr was not know for going after pot that much but clinton mr i never inhaled went after them with a vengence.

holder just said i dont like this law so i will not enforce it, i dont like this oversight so i will ignore it, i want mass spying so i will justify it by twisting regulations or outright rewriting them in secret that is what i am talking about i am talking about justice carried out at the whims of big corporate doners.

kimdotcom is hardly the biggest threat in the world criminal or otherwise the only reason half the actions taken by this white house and the previous one on internet security have been because of doner pressure to make these websites go away by the record and movie industries.

nevermind that the reason half our laws and bill of right exist is to prevent grand fishing expeditions which is all this amounts to if they just swooped in and out and stuff and been sitting on it for how long now? but in this new era of b.s. passing for federal oversight they can just sift and sift and not provide anything.

cerebus23:
Wrong the top cop in the nation takes an oath to uphold the laws of the nation not pick and choose.

the attorney general is a criminal. he cannot pick laws he cannot change laws that is congresses job to set the laws not the attoney generals is to enforce them period.

Every cop, every prosecutor picks what laws they enforce. Ever get off on a warning? All those people cutting a deal. Thats them not enforcing a law.

Why is everyone talking about the US violating the constitution when it is New Zealand that denied Dotcom access to the evidence?

thebobmaster:
Why is everyone talking about the US violating the constitution when it is New Zealand that denied Dotcom access to the evidence?

They're probably assuming US pressuring, which I can't comment on because I have no idea.

OT: Personally, I find this taking on the form of a bullshit witch hunt, though really the big picture is that this is accomplishing nothing.

Raziel:

cerebus23:
Wrong the top cop in the nation takes an oath to uphold the laws of the nation not pick and choose.

the attorney general is a criminal. he cannot pick laws he cannot change laws that is congresses job to set the laws not the attoney generals is to enforce them period.

Every cop, every prosecutor picks what laws they enforce. Ever get off on a warning? All those people cutting a deal. Thats them not enforcing a law.

the top cop in the nation that take an OATH to prosecute the laws as directed by the congress he does not have the authority to say ignore immigration laws because he does not like them, criminal action. treason actually if you want to get really technical oaths and all.

Do cops and prosecutors not swear any oaths?

cerebus23:
it not a qestion of resources of course administration pick focuses bush jr was not know for going after pot that much but clinton mr i never inhaled went after them with a vengence.

holder just said i dont like this law so i will not enforce it, i dont like this oversight so i will ignore it, i want mass spying so i will justify it by twisting regulations or outright rewriting them in secret that is what i am talking about i am talking about justice carried out at the whims of big corporate doners.

kimdotcom is hardly the biggest threat in the world criminal or otherwise the only reason half the actions taken by this white house and the previous one on internet security have been because of doner pressure to make these websites go away by the record and movie industries.

nevermind that the reason half our laws and bill of right exist is to prevent grand fishing expeditions which is all this amounts to if they just swooped in and out and stuff and been sitting on it for how long now? but in this new era of b.s. passing for federal oversight they can just sift and sift and not provide anything.

First off, god damn learn to English.

Second, it is a resource thing most of the time. You see, "I don't want to enforce this" when in reality they have chosen their priorities based on the available manpower. Yes, Holder and Obama have just ignored laws and did what they wanted but that's for R&P.

Third, learn the law before you try to talk about it. The US laws being used in this case haven't been fundamentally altered to go after this guy. This is the same type of investigation that went after Capone and the other mob heads in the late 20's and the 30's. They just have some different charges, but some are the same too.

 

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