Megaupload Founder Sues New Zealand Government for $7 Million

Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom (and others related to the Megaupload case) has filed a lawsuit against the New Zealand government over its illegal spying activities against him and the subsequent raid on his house in early 2012. A New Zealand Court granted him the right to sue earlier this year. New court documents published this week by the New Zealand Herald show that Dotcom is seeking NZ$8.55 million ($6.9 million) in damages.

Last month, Dotcom alleged that the Five Eyes spy network (comprised of spy agencies from New Zealand, Australia, the United Kingdom, Canada, and the United States) was used to spy on him without proper warrants, and that police used unnecessary force during the January 2012 raid on his home.

Speaking to Ars Technica today, Dotcom said that, even though the Prime Minister of New Zealand declined to initiate an independent inquiry into the illegal spying activities used against him, his court case will "uncover the truth about the [Government Communications Security Bureau] using X-Keyscore, Prism, and the Five Eyes spy cloud to spy on New Zealanders."

"The truth will come out," he told the publication.

Dotcom said in his statement filed with the court that an affidavit by a New Zealand financial crimes detective filed in support of the search warrant to conduct the January 2012 raid on Dotcom’s mansion contained no reference to the fact that he had been under surveillance by New Zealand's GCSB spy agency "since at least December 16, 2011."

Dotcom also noted that NZ authorities used a camera installed by [Organized and Financial Crime Agency New Zealand, or OFCANZ] on a nearby property and that Senior Constable Homan used (or planned to use) a hidden pen cam when he visited the Mahoenui Valley property on January 19, 2012. No search warrant had been obtained to use that device, Dotcom claims.

Two months after the raid, Dotcom claims that New Zealand police sent "images/clones of 19 seized items out of New Zealand" to US authorities.

NZ police do not deny that they shared "images/clones of 19 seized items" with U.S. authorities at the request of OFCANZ, but do deny nearly all of the rest of Dotcom’s allegations.

You can read Dotcom's "Statement of Claims" here (PDF).

We will have more on this story as it develops.

Source: Ars Technica

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