Kim Dotcom blasts New Zealand police 'cover-up'

August 30, 2013
Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom speaks at Bowen House in Wellington on July 3, 2013. Dotcom has accused New Zealand police of selectively applying the law Friday after they opted not to prosecute intelligence officials who illegally spied on him.

Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom accused New Zealand police of selectively applying the law Friday after they opted not to prosecute intelligence officials who illegally spied on him.

Police reviewed the actions of the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) after it was revealed last year that the agency unlawfully spied on Dotcom before his arrest for alleged online in January 2012.

They said on Thursday that the investigation had found GCSB staff illegally intercepted an unspecified communication from Dotcom in breach of the Crimes Act.

However, police said they would not prosecute because they could not prove there was a deliberate intent by the intelligence officers to break the law.

Dotcom dismissed the argument and said he never intended for copyright material to be exchanged on his Megaupload file-sharing site but he was still facing charges of online piracy.

"One law for them, another for us," he tweeted. "Where was my 'criminal intent' when some #Megaupload users shared copyright infringing material?"

He said he was not surprised at the police's refusal to prosecute.

"This decision smells like and cover-up," he told TVNZ.

"I didn't expect anything but a whitewash. It's the police investigating the police."

Dotcom is a German national but has New Zealand residency, meaning he should have been off-limits to the GCSB under laws banning the agency from spying on locals.

Prime Minister John Key last year acknowledged the had overstepped its limits and issued a public apology to Dotcom, who is free on bail and fighting to the United States.

Key also introduced legislation allowing the GCSB to spy on residents and citizens for the first time, which passed through parliament earlier this month.

He said on Friday that the showed the GCSB had made a simple mistake that did not warrant .

The opposition Labour Party said the decision raised doubts over whether government agencies would be held to account if they breached surveillance laws.

"How can the public have confidence their privacy will be respected if there are no consequences when the GCSB breaks the law?" deputy leader Grant Robertson said.

The US Justice Department and FBI allege Dotcom's Megaupload sites netted more than US$175 million in criminal proceeds and cost copyright owners more than US$500 million by offering pirated copies of movies, TV shows and other content.

Dotcom, who plans to sue the police and GCSB for damages, argues that Megaupload simply offered a data storage service and was not responsible for content that users placed there.

He launched a new service called Mega earlier this year.

Explore further: NZ court backs Dotcom's right to sue spy agency

Related Stories

NZ court backs Dotcom's right to sue spy agency

March 7, 2013

An appeal court Thursday backed Megaupload boss Kim Dotcom's right to sue New Zealand's foreign intelligence agency for illegally spying on him as part of a US probe into alleged online piracy.

Kim Dotcom and New Zealand PM to face off over spy laws

July 2, 2013

Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom and New Zealand Prime Minister John Key are set to come face to face for the first time Wednesday as lawmakers examine a controversial proposal allowing intelligence agencies to spy on local ...

New Zealand passes law allowing domestic spying

August 21, 2013

New Zealand passed legislation Wednesday allowing its main intelligence agency to spy on residents and citizens, despite opposition from rights groups, international technology giants and the legal fraternity.

NZ PM apologises to Dotcom for spy bungle

September 27, 2012

New Zealand Prime Minister John Key apologised Thursday to Internet tycoon Kim Dotcom over an "unacceptable" bungle by government spies leading up to the arrest of the Megaupload boss.

Recommended for you

A not-quite-random walk demystifies the algorithm

December 15, 2017

The algorithm is having a cultural moment. Originally a math and computer science term, algorithms are now used to account for everything from military drone strikes and financial market forecasts to Google search results.

US faces moment of truth on 'net neutrality'

December 14, 2017

The acrimonious battle over "net neutrality" in America comes to a head Thursday with a US agency set to vote to roll back rules enacted two years earlier aimed at preventing a "two-speed" internet.

FCC votes along party lines to end 'net neutrality' (Update)

December 14, 2017

The Federal Communications Commission repealed the Obama-era "net neutrality" rules Thursday, giving internet service providers like Verizon, Comcast and AT&T a free hand to slow or block websites and apps as they see fit ...

The wet road to fast and stable batteries

December 14, 2017

An international team of scientists—including several researchers from the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory—has discovered an anode battery material with superfast charging and stable operation ...

3 comments

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

antialias_physorg
3 / 5 (2) Aug 30, 2013
Prime Minister John Key last year acknowledged the spy agency had overstepped its limits and issued a public apology

...

He said on Friday that the police investigation showed the GCSB had made a simple mistake that did not warrant prosecution.


Cool. I'll try that if I ever run afoul of the law: "Officer, I overstepped the bounds of the law, but it was a simple mistake so you can go about your business"

For some reason I don't think I'd get far with that line of reasoning.
Doug_Huffman
1 / 5 (3) Aug 30, 2013
Officers of the Court exercise judicial discretion. Kim Dotcom is indiscreet, as are all infamous seekers of notoriety.
dacarls
5 / 5 (1) Sep 02, 2013
So Now the NZ law allows the GCSB to spy on everybody. This is progress?

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.