| Kim Dotcom |
Kiel, West Germany
|Residence||Auckland, New Zealand|
Alleged copyright infringer in the cross hairs of Hollywood and the FBI
Kim Dotcom is a a German-Finnish businessman who rose to fame in Germany in the 1990s as an Internet entrepreneur. He has long advocated for freedom of the press and criticized government overreach in the digital age.
Kim Dotcom was spied on by the GCSB and possibly other intelligence agencies. The GCSB claimed in 2016 that they had stopped spying on him. Later, in 2017 when CGSB malware was detected spying on him, they claimed that they had lost control of their surveillance technology and that they "had no idea" that it was continuing to spy on him.
New Zealand Extradition
After Hollywood executives (and donors) met with Vice President Joe Biden, the FBI closed Megaupload and asked for Kim Dotcom to be extradited from his country of residence, New Zealand. Dotcom said “I do know from a credible source that it was Joe Biden, the best friend of former Senator and MPAA boss Chris Dodd, who ordered his former lawyer and now state attorney Neil MacBride to take Megaupload down", after a meeting with Hollywood tycoons. The Motion Picture Association also spent money lobbying the office of Vice President Joe Biden.
On January 19, 2012, Dotcom was arrested along with three other people in New Zealand in connection with a raid on his property. The raid was later declared illegal. An arrest warrant from the United States and an extradition request from the FBI were opened against Dotcom for alleged copyright violations in connection with Megaupload. Megaupload is said to have inflicted more than $ 500 million in damage to the copyright holders. If convicted in the USA, Dotcom faces prison terms of up to 20 years. Two attempts to leave the pre-trial detention on bail were refused on the grounds that the risk of escape was too high. All mega-services have been switched off.
On June 28, 2012, the New Zealand High Court ruled that searches and seizures were unlawful and the data thus obtained should not have been released to American investigators, because the search warrant was unlawful and the transfer of the seized data carriers to the FBI and the forwarding to the USA violated a direct instruction. In late August 2012, Dotcom obtained six million New Zealand dollars from his frozen assets from the High Court and the right to sell several seized cars. Dotcom intends to use the money to finance his living and legal fees.
On May 31, 2013, New Zealand's highest court ordered the release of Dotcom's IT equipment.
In early February 2014, the Supreme Court's decision of June 28, 2012 was successfully challenged. According to this, the raid on Kim Dotcom's mansion near Auckland was in conformity with the law, with the court noting that the transfer of cloned hard drives was dotcoms to US authorities had no basis whatsoever.
The New Zealand authorities' preservation of evidence in the extradition proceedings was completed at the end of November 2015. On December 23, 2015, a judgment was published that allowed Dotcoms extradition to the USA.  His lawyers announced an appeal against the court's decision.
On August 29, 2016, a new attempt was made by Dotcom's lawyers to prevent his extradition to the USA through a legal process. On February 20, 2017, a second court in New Zealand confirmed that the German internet entrepreneur could be extradited, not for copyright infringement, but for fraud. At the beginning of July 2018, Dotcom's appeal against this judgment failed. Dotcom sued the Supreme Court of New Zealand against his extradition to the USA. The Supreme Court reduced the number of possible charges and dismissed the decision because of formal errors. The appeal process is still ongoing (November 2020). 
In 2014, Kim Dotcom started the Internet Party.
Extradition to the United States
After pressure from Hollywood moguls,
US government was seeking to keep pretty much all of Kim Dotcom's assets, despite the fact that Dotcom himself hasn't been tried — and, in fact, it hasn't even been determined if he can be extradited to the United States