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Thread: Megaupload file-sharing site shut down, founders charged

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    Default Megaupload file-sharing site shut down, founders charged

    Megaupload, one of the internet's largest file-sharing sites, has been shut down by officials in the US.

    The site's founders have been charged with violating piracy laws.

    Federal prosecutors have accused it of costing copyright holders more than $500m (£320m) in lost revenue. The firm says it was diligent in responding to complaints about pirated material.

    Investigators denied a link to recent protests against proposed piracy laws, according to the Wall Street Journal.

    The US Justice Department said that Megaupload's two co-founders Kim Dotcom, formerly known as Kim Schmitz, and Mathias Ortmann were arrested in Auckland, New Zealand along with two other employees of the business at the request of US officials. It added that three other defendants were still at large.

    "This action is among the largest criminal copyright cases ever brought by the United States and directly targets the misuse of a public content storage and distribution site to commit and facilitate intellectual property crime," said a statement posted on its website.

    Third-party sites

    The charges included copyright infringement, conspiracies to commit racketeering, copyright infringement and money laundering.

    A federal court in Virginia ordered that 18 domain names associated with the Hong Kong-based firm be seized.

    The Justice Department said that more than 20 search warrants had been executed in nine countries, and that approximately $50m in assets had been seized.

    It claimed that the accused pursued a business model designed to promote the uploading of copyrighted works.

    "The conspirators allegedly paid users whom they specifically knew uploaded infringing content and publicised their links to users throughout the world," a statement said.

    "By actively supporting the use of third-party linking sites to publicise infringing content, the conspirators did not need to publicise such content on the Megaupload site. Instead, the indictment alleges that the conspirators manipulated the perception of content available on their servers by not providing a public search function on the Megaupload site and by not including popular infringing content on the publicly available lists of top content downloaded by its users."

    Before it was shut down the site posted a statement saying the allegations against it were "grotesquely overblown".
    "The fact is that the vast majority of Mega's internet traffic is legitimate, and we are here to stay," it added.

    "If the content industry would like to take advantage of our popularity, we are happy to enter into a dialogue. We have some good ideas. Please get in touch."

    Blackouts

    The announcement came a day after thousands of websites took part in a "blackout" to protest against the Stop Online Piracy Act (Sopa) and the Protect Intellectual Property Act (Pipa).

    The US Chamber of Commerce has defendend the proposed laws saying that enforcement agencies "lack the tools" to effectively apply existing intellectual property laws to the digital world.

    Industry watchers suggest this latest move may feed into the wider debate.

    "Neither of the bills are close to being passed - they need further revision - but it appears that officials are able to use existing tools to go after a business alleged to be inducing piracy," said Gartner's media distribution expert Mike McGuire.

    "It begs the question that if you can find and arrest people who are suspected to be involved in piracy using existing laws, then why introduce further regulations which are US-only and potentially damaging."
    Source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-16642369

    If they can do all that then why do they need SOPA or PIPA?
    Last edited by asif105878; January 20th, 2012 at 07:51.

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    Khaise, SOPA PIRA pass hoile to r website thakbe na ghorar moto lol.

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    Shouldn't this be in the tech section?

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    Quote Originally Posted by salmanshah View Post
    Shouldn't this be in the tech section?
    Areh.. its a big news... etar dekha dekhi RS FS FSC MF WU etc sob bondho hoyee jete paree... kothin obostaa..!!

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    filesonic got scared ) goto their site, many sites following the rules right now.

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    Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom released on bail

    WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) – The founder of the file-sharing website Megaupload was granted bail and released on Wednesday after a New Zealand judge determined that authorities have seized any funds he might have used to flee the country.





    Pool, AFP/Getty Images
    Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom, shown in court Jan. 25, was released on bail in New Zealand.



    Kim Dotcom, who U.S. authorities allege facilitated millions of illegal downloads through his company, has been in custody since his arrest Jan. 20.

    Magila Annandale, a spokeswoman for the Ministry of Justice, said the ministry was seeking details on the conditions of Dotcom's release. District courts in New Zealand typically don't require a monetary bond when granting bail.

    U.S. authorities claim Megaupload cost movie makers and songwriters some half a billion dollars in lost copyright revenue. They are trying to extradite Dotcom, 38, and three of his colleagues on racketeering charges.

    New Zealand authorities have seized millions of dollars in investments and assets owned by Dotcom, including luxury cars and artworks.

    North Shore District Court Judge Nevin Dawson found that the German-born Dotcom no longer posed a significant flight risk because, as far as the court was aware, he wasn't hiding any money or assets that could help him flee the country. New Zealand courts had earlier turned down Dotcom's bail application and a subsequent appeal, saying he did pose a flight risk, but Dawson said those decisions were made when details about Dotcom's assets remained unclear.

    "Since that time, all known assets have been seized and are unavailable for Mr. Dotcom's use or disposal," the judge found. "No new assets or accounts of any significance have been revealed since his arrest. Mr. Dotcom's submission that he has not concealed any assets or bank accounts has largely been borne out."

    Dawson also said he received an affidavit from Bonnie Lam, the Hong Kong chief financial officer of Megaupload, supporting Dotcom's contention that he has no resources available to him.

    Dotcom was born Kim Schmitz but legally changed his name. He is a citizen of both Germany and Finland and was granted New Zealand residency in 2010. He has also lived in Hong Kong, where the Megaupload company is registered.

    Dawson disputed an earlier court finding that the U.S. doesn't have an extradition treaty with Germany.

    The judge said there is a German law which prevents Germans being extradited to any country — but that a treaty between Germany and the U.S. would allow Dotcom to be prosecuted in Germany should he flee New Zealand and should German authorities deem prosecution appropriate. He said a similar situation applies to Finland.

    Dotcom's colleagues had earlier been granted bail by New Zealand courts.

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    Still Palai tey parei and I BET he's going to play MW3 and get his rank up LOL.

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