U.S. Wins Bid to Limit Disclosure in Kim Dotcom Extradition

The U.S. won an appeal in its bid to limit the amount of information it must turn over to Megaupload.com founder Kim Dotcom in his fight against extradition from New Zealand.

The New Zealand Court of Appeal overturned a ruling that ordered the U.S. to provide extensive documents relating to Dotcom’s indictment, saying the disclosure would slow proceedings.

“If suspects were entitled to extensive disclosure of documents on the basis that they wished to challenge the evidence at the extradition hearing, the procedure would lose much if not most of its efficacy,” the Court of Appeal said in a summary of the ruling on its website today.

Dotcom, 39, was indicted in what U.S. prosecutors dubbed a “mega conspiracy,” accusing his file-sharing website of generating more than $175 million in criminal proceeds from the exchange of pirated film, music, book and software files. He faces as long as 20 years in prison for each of the racketeering and money-laundering charges in the indictment, with the U.S. seeking his extradition for a trial in Virginia.

The amount of documentation ordered to be turned over to Dotcom was unprecedented in the country or anywhere else for extradition cases, the U.S. had argued.

Paul Davison, one of Dotcom’s lawyers, said he plans to appeal to New Zealand’s Supreme Court, the Associated Press reported.

Germany-born Dotcom was arrested at his home in an Auckland, New Zealand, suburb in January last year and spent four weeks in jail before being released to await the extradition hearing, which is scheduled for August.

The case is between United States of America and Kim Dotcom. Civ 2012-404-3026. High Court of New Zealand (Auckland).

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