MegaUpload Lead Programmer out on Bail

Bram van der Kolk, the lead programmer at MegaUpload, is out on bail today. The 29-year-old had a hearing in the North Shore District Court before Judge Pippa Sinclair, who sorted out what the bail conditions should be before his release.

U.S. Government Prosecutor Anne Toohey argued that der Kolk would try to set up a MegaUpload replacement as soon as he was out of jail. His lawyer, Guy Foley, called the prosecution's argument ridiculous because he would remain under heavy FBI surveillance.

Toohey also said that there was a risk that der Kolk would get in contact with his co-accused (there are seven in total) – four of which are currently in New Zealand and three in other countries. Two of the three in other countries are "still at large."

Foley argued that der Kolk should be allowed to two of the co-accused in New Zealand because they all share the same lawyer and need to communicate in order to mount a defense.

Judge Sinclair decided to release him with conditions that included no Internet access, police monitoring for Internet access, and a ban on speaking to any co-defendants other than those who are using the same lawyer as outlined by Foley.

Finn Batato, the 38-year-old from Germany whose bail was granted in principle during January but delayed because he needs a valid bail address, was also in court today. The address given by Batato is the residence of Kim Dotcom’s wife, Mona, but she was apparently ill today. Batato’s hearing will now take place tomorrow.

On a related note, a smaller house located alongside ‘Dotcom Mansion’ was seized today by authorities. Dotcom’s pregnant wife and their three children will be allowed to stay in the property for now. MegaUpload founder Kim Dotcom is scheduled to appear in court February 22.

Source: TorrentFreak

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  1. 0
    Mr.Tastix says:

    The main idea of "no contact" is because the organisations involved think they'd try and restart MegaUpload, yet they fail to realise that there are literally hundreds of different websites that all offer the same basic service as MegaUpload did.

    The only thing that shutting down MegaUpload (and similar websites) does is prove that groups like the RIAA/MPAA truly don't understand the reason why people pirate. If companies spent less time researching ways of stopping piracy and a bit more into researching why people pirate to begin with, they may actually begin to understand the reasoning behind pirates and then figure out how to reduce it.

    It's like trying to cure a disease: You can cure the symptons all you want but that won't necessarily fix the cause of the issue. If you don't understand why something is happening then you'll find it that much more difficult to actually stop it from happening.

  2. 0
    DorthLous says:

    No, he only is allowed to consult with others sharing the same lawyer, period. Furthermore, the claim that they could restart the site is a problem since they have not even yet proven that the site was guilty of breaching a law.

  3. 0
    Neeneko says:

    Yeah.. notice this type of stuff does not happen when music executives get in trouble for violating other IP laws….

    This whole prosecution is pretty extrajudicial… if it did not have such massive political backing I would wager someone would get in trouble for misconduct or vexious litigation.  I doubt the RIAA/MPAA even cares what the outcome is… all they really set out to do was demonstrate that if you do not play ball they CAN hurt you, obeying the law is irrelevant.

  4. 0
    DorthLous says:

    They are charged, they don't yet have a criminal record (however, so many people think like you that charged == criminal record or worse that they might as well.)


    But I agree with the feeling. For that matter, why COULDN'T they talk with one another? They have not yet been found guilty? And what if they build a better defense? Isn't that the goal of a proper justice system to prove outside of all reasonable doubts if some people are guilty of the charges held against them? How is limiting their defense helping them to prove it outside of ANY REASONABLE DOUBTS?

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