MegaUpload Case Descends from Silly to Ridiculous

As the NY Times reports, the leader of the file sharing service was arrested in a flurry of heavy publicity last month:

Mr. Dotcom — born Kim Schmitz and also known as Kimble and Kim Tim Jim Vestor — and three others connected with Megaupload were arrested in connection with U.S. indictments on charges involving copyright infringement and money laundering. At the time, the U.S. Department of Justice said that in all, seven people had been arrested around the world in connection with an investigation into online piracy of numerous copyrighted works, including music and films.

People used MegaUpload as a way to share pirated content. A customer of MegaUpload would rip a CD or DVD, post it to MegaUpload, and then share the link with their friends. But now the case is on more shaky ground.

The biggest victory came last Thursday, when a High Court judge ruled the New Zealand police had used the wrong type of search warrant, so the entire raid had been illegal. Mr. Dotcom’s lawyers are due back in the Auckland High Court on Wednesday, seeking the return of seized assets and data.

Now, some fans of the service have begun digging into the timing and motivation for the arrest. In TorrentFreak, a news service for those who use Torrent to share CD and DVD content, we read:

Kim Dotcom says he knows who ordered the shutdown of his company and related sites. The Megaupload founder informs TorrentFreak that he has insider information which reveals that none other than Vice President Joe Biden directed attorney Neil MacBride to target the site. Biden is known to be one of the best friends of former Senator Chris Dodd, who’s now heading the MPAA.

When Megaupload was raided in January, questions were raised as to why the U.S. Government acted so aggressively against a company that seemingly played by the rules.

It’s no secret that the MPAA provides the authorities with “leads” for criminal investigations on a regular basis, but considering the size and location of the company Megaupload was not an ordinary target.

TorrentFreak documents White House visitor logs showing the new head of the Motion Picture Association of America, Chris Dodd, former senator from Connecticut, and others in the MPAA around the time of the arrest of Mr. Dotcom. He suspects that VP Biden wanted to help his old friend Dodd punish a high profile adversary of the movie industry.

According to Dotcom the Mega case was discussed June last year in a meeting in the West Wing of the White House.

“After we received information from an insider we scanned the White House visitor logs for all meetings of Chris Dodd and studio bosses with Joe Biden and Obama. They are publicly available on the White House website,” Dotcom told us.

“It is interesting that a man by the name of Mike Ellis of MPA Asia, an extradition expert and former superintendent of the Hong Kong police, was also at a meeting with Dodd, all studio bosses and Joe Biden. The same Mike Ellis met with the Minister of Justice Simon Power in New Zealand.”

You can read the visitor logs on the TorrentFreak site. To paraphrase Glenn Reynolds, they told me if I voted for the Republican, gangs of jack booted thugs would cross the globe to arrest businessmen on orders from cronys of the Vice President.

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