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Kim Dotcom Spying Operation Was Illegal, NZ High Court Rules (torrentfreak.com)
226 points by tgragnato on Aug 27, 2017 | hide | past | web | favorite | 29 comments

At this point I think the entire case needs to be thrown out, or settled. Leave Kim alone. This entire mess really should've never gotten this far.

I honestly think this guy is a fraud and a complete idiot, but the state really did wrong here, so I have to agree. If this isn't thrown out, then what ever will?

Exactly. Everyone is entitled to fundamental rights, not just the people we like.

Sounds like everyone is all in agreement then. Let's just hope the courts are just in this matter.

I listened to the whole live streamed appeal trial, ( over 50 hours of arguments ).

There is a clear miscarriage of justice, and protecting the justice system's integrity should come above pleasing Hollywood.

The problem for his case is, he is fighting in New Zealand for how the case is made, but the real case is in the US.

The US Authorities haven't followed the New Zealand Law before, why would they follow it now? They didn't break the law in using GCSB, why should their case be affected?

Just because they illegally took the evidence collected? Than they would have closed the case before now.

The problem here for the US is that nobody sane actually believes the universal standard some US judges insists exist, as a lot of commercial activity(as in pretty much every tech company in the US's non-US revenue) depends on the US respecting the view that no US court have universal jurisdiction.

This makes it extremely problematic if the US start going after a NZ citizens who have been cleared of the alleged crime by a NZ court.

The mention of NZ citizens here prompts an interesting point. Dotcom is currently a legal resident of NZ but has not yet been granted citizenship. As I understand it, he has now lived in the country long enough to apply for citizenship, and if granted citizenship then he would be given more rights in terms of how his extradition is dealt with.

One requirement of the grant of citizenship is that the applicant is "of good character", which presumably means you haven't recently been convicted of a crime. As a matter of due process, I would hope that a mere accusation by a foreign government would not count as proof of someone's bad character. On the other hand, I also suspect that the executive is given quite a lot of discretion to withhold the granting of citizenship from anyone, and there is the matter of his 2009 dangerous driving conviction.

Does anyone know enough about NZ law to determine whether gaining the protections of citizenship is an avenue that is open to him?

He is a German citizen right? So even if the NZ government were to retract his residency he's still not on the next plane to the US.

Very few states exempt non citizens from the protections against government overreach, as most interpretations of UN's human rights treaties kind of forbids it, so even if he is not a citizen the NZ government still have to obey it's own laws in prosecuting a case against him(the US is notorious for non-compliance with treaties they themselves promoted when a treaty goes beyond the protections offered by the rather washed out US constitution).

The problem here is again that any action taken against Kim Dotcom by the NZ government in spite of it's domestic court case falling apart will be government overreach by just about any sane standard. so there is not a lot neither the US not the NZ authorities can do if the NZ court end up deciding that the he cannot be extradited to the US or convicted under New Zeeland law.

Diplomatically the problem is also that this isn’t a one of against a shady businessman but a part of a trend that have already seen the EU court nullify a data safe haven agreement due to the US court systems rather strange belief that it's not actually bound by any international treaties.

He was convicted of insider trading (I think) back in Germany, so they might not like that. Others have been able to buy citizenship though.

Unless you've started a multi-million dollar company... I don't think you're in any place to call KimDotCom "fraud" or "idiot"

You could make literally, word-for-word the same argument about Bernard Madoff. All you'd have to do is change the names.

Or Jordan Belfort for that matter. Not sure if "idiot" is warranted though; it's not like they made their money through dumb blind luck.

I don't see how starting a business which had multi-million dollar revenue really contradicts the fraud part.

Fraud can result in substantial revenue?

In the documentary that was just released [1] Kim Dotcom claims that NZ more recently offered to drop the case if he agreed to leave NZ. He states he "declined", but in more colorful language.

[1] https://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/kim_dotcom_caught_in_the_we...

What do you mean by the "entire case"?

GCSB, the NZ spy agency, has certainly strayed by using their powers against a NZ citizen, and there should be repercussions.

However, the DoJ's case against Dotcom does not revolve around GCSB. Let's not throw the baby out with the bathwater.

If the spying had been "successful" Kim would have gone to jail, lost his wealth, etc. for breaking the law.

So, now that it's clear the GCSB broke the law and did wrong, who of them is going to jail?

Until individuals are held responsible and go to jail, this kind of thing will never stop, because there are no consequences.

The same people that are going to jail for Obama admin's illegal unmasking of US citizen names or Hillary's illegal destruction of evidence under federal subpoena: NO ONE.

Not only are their no consequences, but the actors at that level know there will be no consequences if they get caught before they commit the crimes. The justice & legal system is far too corrupt to ever touch the de facto oligarchy.

Let's not forget the kidnap and murder of Osama bin Laden.

I know this is controversial, but he was sentences to death with no trail or anything.

Violating human rights against one individual, is, as per the original definition, violating the rights of all of humanity.

I get that this was an extreme case, but there's always an extreme case that goes first, and the line gets gradually pushed further and further. We've seen this in history countless times.

You can't exactly expect all war deaths to come with trials though.

You could expect Congress to authorize the military action or declare war though. Without Congressional approval that was just an extrajudicial killing.

Would have been better if the US took the Taliban up on their offer to turn over Bin Laden shortly after the WTC attacks. Very few people even remember the offer was made.

>You could expect Congress to authorize the military action or declare war though.

Yeah you could. But that's a constitutional procedural issue. It's very separate from whether it was in practice a war action, and it was.

Snowdens documents shown that the GCSB is really just a front for NSA intelligence gathering and is likely mostly funded by US Tax dollars, I guess they are just doing what their paymaster asked of them.

Great, now who would be held responsible for that?

It's the government, so nobody. I guess someone might get fired if it negatively affects the governments case against Kim.

Governments never punish their own agents for illegal deeds performed in furtherance of the governments agenda, that'd just be tremendously inconvenient.

What's worrying is that apparently NZ secret service just spied on Kim Dotcom, even though NZ national security was not at stake.

If you haven't seen it, this is a pretty good documentary on the whole situation: http://kimdotcom.film/

Does New Zealand have a history of hosting its security services personally accountable when they break the law?

Do changing the laws to make it legal count? http://i.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/9070435/Controversial...

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