Did Key know about the raid on Dotcom's estate?
Kim Dotcom, founder of Megaupload whose home was spectacularly raided by heavily-armed troops in January 2012, has since had an apology from New Zealand PM John Key, who claimed that the GCSB security services had acted unlawfully and that he personally was appalled by what had happened. However in a parliamentary inquiry Kim Dotcom has alleged that Key was well aware of what was going on, even before the raid took place. If true, that would directly implicate Key in those same security services abuses.
Key has since described Dotcom as a "well-known conspiracy theorist" and said he was "utterly wrong." The exchange had all the snap and vim of a schoolyard. Dotcom: "You know I know." Key: "I know you don't know. I know you don't know." Dotcom: "Why are you turning red, prime minister?" Key: "I'm not. Why are you sweating?" All this in a packed out meeting room, with everyone from MPs right down to off-duty staffers keen to get a look in at the bullfight. According to a video posted by Seven Sharp, Dotcom has political ambitions. "He doesn't want to be in front, the politician," claimed the Seven Sharp reporter who spoke to Dotcom, "but he does want to be the guy in the background."
Dotcom's statement was given as part of a parliamentary inquiry as part of a proposed expansion of domestic surveillance laws. The problem with the Dotcom incident, as Key and the GCSB discovered to their cost, was that Dotcom, as a New Zealand resident, could not be legally spied on by domestic intelligence services. The proposed changes would make it legal for the security services to gather intelligence on residents. The GCSB is a contributor to Echelon, a signals intelligence network between Canada, Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and the United States.