Tech

Megaupload: ex-leaders plead guilty, Kim Dotcom is furious

After 10 years of an interminable legal saga relating to the closure of the Megaupload download site, the outcome is soon coming to an end. Indeed, Bram Van der Kalk and Mathias Ortmann, both former leaders, finally decided to plead guilty. This reversal of the situation is justified by the fear of extradition to the United States which weighed on the two men.

After 10 years of endless legal battles, the former leaders of Megaupload Bram Van der Kalk and Mathias Ortmann finally accepted their wrongs and signed a settlement with the New Zealand government. A turnaround was needed to avoid their extradition to the United States.

As a reminder, the two men are presumed guilty of charges of copyright infringement, racketeering and money laundering. These serious charges were beginning to seem too heavy to bear, especially in the event of extradition. The agreement therefore became a matter of course when the possibility of staying in New Zealand arose.

Mathias Ortmann and Bram van der Kolk make an agreement, Kim Dotcom soon to be extradited

10 years in prison in New Zealand rather than extradition to the United States, this is at least the interpretation that can be given to the arrangement that the former leaders of Megaupload concluded last May. The agreement only concerns Mathias Ortmann and Bram Van der Kolk, because their former friend Kim Dotcom will be extradited. Moreover, the latter does not take off the volte-face of his ex-collaborators. He also accuses his former partners of participating through this arrangement in the expansion of chinese espionage.

In reality, this agreement does not change the charges against the two men. They will be judged for the same facts, except that whatever sanction is imposed on them, it will be served on New Zealand territory. A week after said arrangement, their hearing was finally held before the Auckland High Court. The two ex-leaders were immediately found guilty of conspiracy. They allegedly benefited fraudulently from copyright-infringing material through an “organized criminal group”. The respondents are suspected of having worked to distribute infringing content through Megaupload and related sites, all for financial reasons.

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