Based upon this, a higher court may very well reverse the lower court's decision. Kim Dotcom isn't going anywhere until he has exhausted all of his extradition appeals.
Money laundering would be extraditable even stand-alone, right?
Yes, of course appeals will always be used to delay extraditions and anything. This is not really to the credit of justice systems, though it may sometimes lead to outcomes that are "right".
(I just recently got decision for my friend's mother's residence permit where our local government tired out after a repeated appeal process of seven years, after two full rounds of all court stages plus the ECHR. We lost in the courts at all stages but the authorities just realised that this is never going to end so it's better to give in.)
How does that work? New Zealand is a signatory to the Berne Convention and also to WIPO. That means they agree to hold similar copyright laws and protections.
"In some circumstances, a person may commit a criminal offence if they make, import, sell, hire or distribute infringing copies of works. Criminal liability can attract fines of up to $150,000 and imprisonment for up to 5 years."
and the US claims that money laundering because it was proceeds from buying and selling illegal materials.
The irony is this part:
"Griffiths finally returned to Australia on 2 March 2008, after 5 weeks as an illegal alien in the US immigration detention system following his release from prison on 26 January 2008 (Australia Day). A condition of his repatriation to Australia was that he never again re-enter the United States of America, a country he had never visited before being extradited to it."
Thanks for educating me about this.
Julian Assange faces similar offense, though in this case they are claiming national security as opposed to copy right infringement.
A NZ newspaper just published an article about the likely process at http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objecti...
1. Appeal to the NZ High Court on whether the law was applied correctly
2. Appeal to NZ Court of Appeals
3. Appeal to NZ Supreme Court
4. NZ Justice Minister decides whether there's any reasons in the Extradition Act that meant extradition should not be ordered, including humanitarian and political persecution reasons.
The US has Kim Schmitz dead to rights in this case.
There's a whole mythology about what MegaUpload actually was, and it gets partial anecdotal support from people who, for instance, used it or had friends who used it solely as a sort of Dropbox or benign file transmission method.
But when the DOJ imaged the servers, they got Schmitz's mail spools, and they have Schmitz and his employees in black- and- white discussing payment systems that disbursed cash to users specifically based on pirated media.
My favorite anecdote from the indictment:
At one point during the operation of MegaUpload, a user downloaded an episode of Dexter from it, and complained to Schmitz via email that the video quality was low.
Schmitz responded not by scrubbing Dexter off his site, but instead by demanding that his staff fix the video quality issues.
Not accurate. Read the indictment at the link on this page.
- Bottom of page 11: thirty-nine infringing copies of copyright motion pictures were present on their leased servers at Carpathia Hosting... in the Eastern District of Virginia
- Page 18:The Mega Conspiracy leases approximately 25 petabytes of data storage from Carpathia to store content associated with The Mega Site.
- It also looks like they leased servers in the US from Cogent, Leaseweb. They paid Carpathia $13M US to host Mega files in the US.
- They also used a US-based Paypal account to receive funds and pay the different hosts in the US.
- They made "reward" payments to US residents who provided copyrighted material.
Mega was running an illegal business in the US.
The US has many citizens that rightly should stand trial for crimes a whole lot more serious than facilitating copyright violation, and none ever will. Reciprocity in situations like these would be very much appreciated and the US is very very reluctant to let any of its citizens be extradited. It happens, but the frequency is dis-proportional to the point of being comical.
> A critical test set out in the treaty is that the British request must include "such information as would provide a reasonable basis to believe that the person sought committed the offence for which extradition is requested."
> This requirement does not apply to requests submitted by the US to the UK.
Further, New Zealand made their own choice to extradite him. They could have refused, they instead chose to. The alternative might have been an international incident, but they decided to aid the US and turn him over. The US is not so all-powerful that it can compel governments to act against their own best interest, only powerful enough to align interests, by hook or crook.
What world do you live in? The United States often compels governments to act against their own interests. The 1973 US backed coup leading to the death of 11,000 civilians. The Iranian-Contras. The School of the Americas, which literally trained terrorists in South America, Iraq!
Thirty years from now, declassified information will show the US caused the rebellion in Libya and that the US directly funded ISIS.
Granted New Zealand is a Commonwealth State and it'd be much more difficult to go to war with a developed English speaking nation, but they are still under the thumb of the US/UK empire. They ruled the spying on Kim Dotcom was illegal, then changed the laws to make it retroactively legal...and also allow the GCHB to spy on anyone they want.
if you want to think the US industry most interested in the copyright law there moving all that money at the right time is just a coincidence, suit yourself.
I suspect that it's also not unusual for Hollywood to sweeten the pot when they want to film somewhere with donations of various types.
The connection between the case and those films is extremely tenuous.
same with China. i bet right now our edge servers are pumping out lots of state censored topics that are also possible treason death sentences.
If you had committed a crime in Saudi Arabia that is also illegal in the US and the US courts have ruled that the extradition is legal, I don't see what's wrong with being extradited.
It's illegal in the US to make and distribute adult films without the proper permits and paperwork and health checks.
Let's say someone made a website that had Saudi girls, now living in the US, make adult films (without the proper permitting and everything so they were violating a US law as well) and advertised those films in Saudi Arabia. And let's say there are Saudi customers.
To speed things up, maybe they had a CDN server in Saudi Arabia.
When the authorities in Saudi Arabia discover this and charge the film makers, would the US grant extradition?
* The film makers / business operators in this scenario would be 100% American.
* The product of their creation and the service itself wouldn't be illegal in the US. What was illegal was some business decisions they made.
* Their CDN helped facilitate optimal data transmission but was not required for business operations
* The Saudi court in this scenario wishes to charge them for the service itself and the product created
* Kim is not an american citizen and his company wasn't American
* His business was legal in the country it was incorporated in, although he arguably made some business decisions that were not entirely above board
* He had leased equipment in the US to help serve people in that geographic region
* The US wishes to jail him for the actual operation of the service
Would the US extradite the US citizen to Saudi Arabia for punishment? If not, why should NZ extradite Kim to the US?
*edit - Somehow didn't see that
michaelmrose made this argument too in this exact same thread
This has meant that the US has introduced extra sex crime law so that Americans who travel overseas to take advantages of different age of consent laws can be tried as if they had committed the crime in the US.
Note, we are charging people for crimes committed in other countries so the president is independent of crime type.
If twenty country's all make blasphemy illegal, then a single speech in a single country would be breaking the law in each of them.
As to jaywalking, that might not be the root cause. Selective enforcement means people often get charge for reasons other than the direct action.
It doesn't help that people like Snowden, Greenwald and Assange associated themselves with his cause when they appeared at his election event in Auckland where he promised a bombshell against the government but produced what were likely forged documents.
I'm all for copyright reform, online privacy rights, reform of US judicial overreach, etc. but Kim Dotcom earned $175M by commercializing misappropriated content. There was no cause here as could be argued with the pirate bay or other similar cases. There was also nothing innovative or interesting about what he did. This guy was in it for himself and knew what he was getting himself into and what the consequences could be.
That he cast himself as an internet jesus was to be expected by those who knew him, but that so many bought it up is very unfortunate and damaging to legitimate causes.
His motivation weren't noble; but as far as thieves go, I'll take Kim Dotcom over the MPAA or the RIAA.
Yeah, that's called theft. The "producers" are the guys (or organizations) that paid their money to have these TV shows shot, you know. If they wanted to, they could sell only one copy of their shows at all, like Wu Tang. Or just show us the trailers, make everyone want them, and never release them, just for the laughs.
Only by loose metaphor; its actually properly called "copyright infringement", which is more analogous to trespass to chattels than to theft, or even conversion (though it obviously differs from either in that copyrights are intangible personal property, and the others deal with tangible personal property.)
"... the Statute of Anne is formally titled "An Act for the Encouragement of Learning, by Vesting the Copies of Printed Books in the Authors or Purchasers of Copies, during the Times therein mentioned". The preamble for the Statute indicates the purpose of the legislation - to bring order to the book trade - saying:
..., and for the Encouragement of Learned Men to Compose and Write useful Books; May it please Your Majesty, that it may be Enacted... "
I pirated thousands of stuff, and I am proud to say it, because pirating thousands of stuff is how I educated myself, and how I got cultured in things that don't exist in my country, and now allow me to do the amazing stuff that I do (including participate in the international economy, that has more money available than local economy, and earn enough money to sometimes be able to legally buy something, instead of pirating it).
I think, when you really analyze the basic motivations behind IP, they come down to 'It's the law of the jungle.' aka "Fuck you, pay me".
There are lots of humane laws that take the exigencies of life into account, but there are also laws that the powerful have created to exploit the less powerful. A legal framework that excludes the poor from sharing the ideas of the powerful or wealthy is not an 'enlightened' law, and therefore I believe anything that can be done to fight it or weaken it's enforcement mechanisms is a mitzvah.
The point of copyright was to ensure that people who made creative works could get paid and earn a living. Not to tie their cultural works up for the rest of their lives, everyone else be damned.
Given that the idea of a "tragedy" has been around for a few thousand years now (the greeks wrote about it a long time ago) how is any creative work created completely in a vacuum? I believe that the answer is that it is not. Many stories have different details but there are probably only a few dozen archetypical stories.
We have the idea of compulsory licensing for a bunch of different things. Why shouldn't movies and TV shows and such also be licensed that way?
The difference is of course that those startups end up making their content legal. But I don't see how what MU did is not okay, but what YouTube and Spotify did is fine.
What Spotify did?
I don't know if this program was implemented before the copyright crackdown, though.
The idea of the post was to compare and contrast the internal YouTube emails that came out as part of Viacom vs YouTube with the internal Megaupload emails [2.5].
The reason why the post remained unpublished is because after reading the relevant indictments and court rulings I found that there were clear distinctions between the cases.
Namely it was that YouTube were grappling with how to deal with the situation and not sure where they stood while Megaupload knew exactly where they were and what they were doing - they were actually assisting users in locating pirated content when support was emailed.
Google also implemented ContentID to help identity content, while in contrast Megaupload placed a cap on the number of takedown requests a content owner could file and internal emails show Kim Dotcom being angry at employees for taking down copyright content that wasn't explicitly cited in an DMCA request. The employees also discussed how they built their filtering system to take down child pornography but not affect copyrighted content.
In the latest appeal court decision in Viacom vs YouTube the judge vacated all counts against YouTube and found that the company had no knowledge of specific infringements of copyrighted works. The judge also found that there was no evidence that YouTube induced its users to upload infringing videos, or "interacted with infringing users to a point where it might be said to have participated in their activity."
MegaUpload did exactly that. Reading the MegaUpload indictment and contrasting it to the appeals court decision in Viacom demonstrates the same with every count or claim (being willful, having knowledge, inducing users, etc.)
 DOJ vs Megaupload: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/business/documents/mega...
 Viacom vs YouTube district appeals court decision: https://www.docketalarm.com/cases/New_York_Southern_District...
Specifically, emails from the YouTube case are available from both sides (emails that show YouTube in a good light presented by YouTube, and emails that show YouTube in a negative light presented by Viacom), but in the MegaUpload case the only emails are from the indictment (and thus are likely to be hand picked for the purposes of helping secure the indictment).
You can add that to your post to complete it.
When I silently wish for the extradition effort to fail, I'm not backing him. I really just want to see a sovereign allied anglophone nation tell the US to see that its jurisdictional claims stop at the 12 NM limit, and to please mind its own business. I don't want to see US playing at world police, except for crimes heinous enough that every nation should be combating them wherever they may occur, like war crimes, terrorism, international financial fraud, and hijackings of international shipping vessels.
Why should Dotcom get so much effort? What risk does he pose to US citizens to justify transporting him out of NZ? Whatever that may be, the risk of allowing the US to assert intellectual property jurisdiction over the whole Internet is far worse.
I'd like Dotcom to eventually get comeuppance, but not in a way that establishes an undesirable precedent.
But our system is badly broken here in the U.S.
Appeals to the law as it currently exists and saying essentially, "You broke the law; now pay the price." are ignorant and stupid since our whole concept of justice is predicated on the idea that any sufficiently unacceptable law should be able to be nullified by jury.
This is still true in theory, but in practice, one of the major checks in the grand balancing scheme of our system of justice is non-existant.
Fix that. Then worry about who broke what laws.
Off-topic but tangentially related.
I served on jury duty for the local court system and had an opportunity to speak with one of the prosecuting attorneys after my term was over. I couldn't help myself from asking him how he felt, as a prosecutor, about jury nullification, and would have been surprised by his response had I not already been aware of his political leanings. It was his personal opinion that jury nullification was under-utilized and that it shouldn't serve as a reason to disqualify jurors. Indeed, he wished jurors were generally more well-informed and at least aware of the possibility and utility of its use, especially given its history in colonial courts. (It's a shame that some localities may have laws that could be used to punish such jurors.)
That much gives me hope, but considering how few attorneys and judges likely share his sentiments, I'm not sure if that hope is misplaced (maybe it is). Plus, it's anecdotal with a sample size of one. ;)
I admit I don't really have a point other than to share my experience, and I'm neither agreeing nor disagreeing with your assertions, but I found it interesting that there are at least some people in the bowels of the judicial system who have similar concerns. I'm just not sure they're numerous enough (or ever will be numerous enough) to effect change.
Dotcom has never been to the US. I personally don't want a world where I may be extradited to a country I've never been because of something accessible on the internet and the political stars happened to align with my home country.
Blasphemy is not criminal in the US, so let's not worry about that until you travel to Turkey or EU countries where "hate laws" apply.
Money laundering, fraud etc. on the other hand are illegal both in New Zealand and the US, so extradition grounds are there.
The fact that Kim Schmitz has never been to US does not mean that what he's done wouldn't be relevant to US and US laws wouldn't apply.
As an example, had Hideki Tojo ever set foot in the US? Not that I know - he might have, but it's not relevant. His actions were clearly seen on the US soil, and Americans did execute him by hanging.
Perhaps Kim Schmitz is also a sort of figurehead here.
I have not doubt that the amount of losses that copyright holders claim were lost due to his actions are vastly exaggerated. On the other hand I have no doubt that Schmitz has been making considerable profit out of a copyright infringement racket.
That said, there's a little more to it than just promptly addressing DMCA takedown requests. In order to be eligible for the DMCA safe-harbor, a company must not be aware of specific cases of copyright infringement on their website without taking some action agais them.
If you want to praise heroes of the open Internet or encryption, there are tons of far more deserving people who create original work rather than profiteering off the work of others.
Quite a lot of money has been spent taking down pirate bay and Mega and dotcom and etc.
There are numerous Latin American countries with known narcoterrorists and traffickers that refuse to extradite their criminals to the US, even though their criminals had a direct impact on the lives of US citizens.
On the other hand, Kim Schmitz' crimes are relatively benign compared to those committed by narcoterrorists. It just goes to show how backwards the priorities are for our politicians.
Keep in mind a 6 company oligarchy controls almost all of the media coming out of the United States.
The United States has a lot more resources than New Zealand. So there are plenty of other ways for them to incentivize cooperation. I just thought I'd throw out this random fact that a significant amount of films are shot there.
With regards to dotcom's extradition, I do think the initial raid on his house was an absolute disgrace, but it seems pretty unlikely that he would have had the grace of the court this long in any other OECD country, although that's partly because of the idiotically bungled warrants. The extradition process would have been much faster from the UK for example. 
As a rule, our judges are typically not very cooperative with our government , let alone foreign ones.
He ran a business and made 8 figures selling other peoples content without permission.
Showtime allowed Dexter to be rebroadcast in NZ on a delayed schedule (sometimes close to a year) on free, broadcast TV.
That means any viewer with a little patience could watch Dexter without paying anything. Also, sometimes these American programs are shown on an accelerated schedule. Viewers can watch a new episode every night instead of having to wait for a week.
This is very similar to the emails from YouTube's early days where some of the first employees are openly discussing how to get more pirated material.
the Google purchase discussion included talks about the liability because of pirated material. and i bet if some user complained about play back issues about any video they would fix it too.
it's just a matter of how the lawyer taking to press wants you to feel. and we usually fall very easily.
Kimble Schmidt is getting what he deserves.
In other words, it is extremely naive (and quite unfair to infringers) to assume that EVERY pirated copy of something is a lost sale. The folks I've known who pirate are more like... data hoarders than payment evaders... Oftentimes they never even bothered consuming the media, it was all about collecting things first for them, and they would have never paid for said media to begin with, so it really becomes nebulous to start swinging around accusations of theft, because... what was "stolen"? Some unknown percentage of the copies surely ARE lost sales, but how can we determine that percentage? Would it vary based on attributes of the media?
In any event, I think the entire state of China would probably be the worst copyright offender, if they're looking for someone to go after...
That's not to say that blatant piracy is a good thing either. I just don't think the industry has figured out a very good response to it. Rather, convenience features and price point could be adjusted to make piracy a less attractive option.
There is a difference between copy/paste and stealing. When stealing, scarcity is implicitly assumed and one party physically loses something they had. With copy/paste nothing is physically lost from either party and there is no scarcity.
Once a month in my country someone shoots up a school and now we've had a terrorist attack. Meanwhile the FBI and DOJ is spending mine and my fellow citizens precious resources chasing copyright law half way across the world. I am ashamed to be an American. I am proud of what this country is supposed to stand for, but I am appalled by the criminal negligence and ignorance of our leaders.
How much did those scandals affect the economy, compared to the effect of MU?
In my opinion, they're two entirely separate issues. And getting both right would probably require something like a President Sanders with a Democratic congress willing to pass significant campaign finance reform.