Kim Dotcom, the founder of now defunct cloud storage/streaming service Megaupload, announced today that he’s suing the New Zealand government for illegally spying on him and raiding his home in 2012.
The lawsuit is somewhat significant because New Zealand authorities were acting against Dotcom at the request of the U.S., which claimed that Megaupload was responsible for $500 million in harm to copyright owners while generating more than $175 million from the business. While I find it hard to believe anyone could make the case that Megaupload wasn’t facilitating piracy and copyright infringement, the company itself wasn’t directly responsible for those crimes — making the U.S.’s anti-piracy efforts look overly extreme.
Dotcom is asking for $7 million in damages from police and GCSB (a federal NZ security agency) for what he describes as “excessively aggressive and invasive approach” in its pursuit of Megaupload, according the New Zealand Herald. The lawsuit’s claims are based on court documents of the raid against Dotcom that were recently unsealed.
In the suit, Dotcom alleges that he was being spied on and prosecuted using data collected by multiple security agencies in the U.S., U.K., Canada, and Australia. He also details the raid on his home, which included helicopters, armed authorities, and keeping his pregnant wife from seeing their children. (For those who are curious, a video of the raid on Dotcom itself can be viewed online.)
Via Ars Technica