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A Win for the US and a Loss for Dotcom

December 22, 2017

But wait, there's more!

 

It has been nearly six years since the District Court first executed warrants in January 2012 on request from the United States in a bid to extradite Kim Dotcom and his business partners to face copyright claims over the file sharing website megaupload.com.  Ever since then Dotcom has opposed his extradition.

 

The United States say that Kim Dotcom’s now defunct megaupload.com file sharing website infringed copyright.  It says that Kim Dotcom and his colleagues knew that its users were engaged in widespread piracy of copyright material like songs and movies.  Dotcom and his colleagues said that they didn’t have any knowledge of what its users downloaded or uploaded on the megaupload platform.   

 

The latest is the High Court decision Kim Dotcom v The District Court at North Shore [2017] NZHC 3158 [15 December 2017]. 

 

The background to this latest round is that in 2015 the District Court ruled that Dotcom should be extradited.  Dotcom unsuccessfully appealed that decision to the High Court.  Dotcom has appealed that decision and the appeal is due to be heard in the Court of Appeal in early February 2018.

 

The most recent decision from the High Court relates to a strike out application by the United States for seven of the eight causes of action in judicial review proceedings brought by Dotcom. 

The judicial review proceedings are largely focussed on the original warrants issued by the District Court.  The Supreme Court has already ruled the warrants valid. 

 

The United States sought to strike out on the basis that the causes of action disclose no reasonably arguable cause of action or are an abuse of process, largely because the issues have been dealt with by the Supreme Court or are the subject of the appeal to the Court of Appeal.

 

It was a resounding loss for Dotcom and a win for the United States.  The judicial review proceedings were said to be seeking to re-litigate matters determined by the Supreme Court already, or on appeal to the Court of Appeal. 

 

The judicial review proceeding remains live in relation to just the eighth cause of action and is due back in court in early February 2018.

 

No doubt we will hear more about Dotcom in 2018 with the Court of Appeal due to hear the appeal on the extradition ruling and the High Court hearing the judicial review proceedings challenging the warrants.

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