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New Zealand Supreme Court declines to hear side case in MegaUpload saga

By | Published on Friday 15 March 2019


The Supreme Court in New Zealand has declined to hear a side lawsuit in the very long running MegaUpload case. Though it will still consider later this year a final appeal from the former MegaUpload management who are fighting extradition to the US.

American authorities have been trying to extradite MegaUpload founder Kim Dotcom and three of his former colleagues to face charges of criminal copyright infringement ever since 2012. Various courts in Dotcom’s current home country of New Zealand have approved his extradition, but one more appeal, in the Supreme Court, is due to take place in June.

Concurrent to all that, in 2017 Dotcom filed a separate legal claim requesting a judicial review of the extradition process to date. That claim outlined eight specific grievances with said process, including issues with search warrants and the seizure of property. Most of those grievances had already been aired in past court hearings.

New Zealand’s High Court subsequently dismissed seven of the grievances. A decision that the Court Of Appeal then upheld, it concluding that all seven of the grievances the lower court had thrown out were either “not reasonably arguable or were abuses of process”.

Never one to give up, Dotcom wanted to take the judicial review claim to the Supreme Court in a bid to have his seven grievances reinstated. But judges there have declined to consider the matter. According to the New Zealand Herald, they said they were not persuaded that the proposed appeal “raises matters of general and public importance”, or that failing to consider the case will result in a “miscarriage of justice”.

So bad news for Team Dotcom. Though this was always a side-show to the main proceedings which will still get quality time before New Zealand’s highest court. The US argues that MegaUpload management wilfully allowed and encouraged rampant copyright infringement on its long defunct video-sharing and digital-locker platforms. Dotcom et al counter that their business was protected by safe harbour.