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“Broke” Kim Dotcom to find out about bail status tomorrow

By | Published on Thursday 27 November 2014

Kim Schmitz

MegaUpload founder Kim Dotcom should find out tomorrow whether he is heading back to prison after a long hearing earlier today on allegations that the often controversial digital entrepreneur broke bail conditions.

As much previously reported, Dotcom is accused by the US government of money laundering and copyright crimes in relation to his time running his file-transfer company, and the States have been trying for three years now to get him extradited to America to face the charges against him. Hollywood and the major labels, meanwhile, have launched civil copyright infringement proceedings.

When the US authorities swooped in January 2012, shutting down MegaUpload and seizing its assets, they also had the New Zealand police arrest Dotcom and some of his also NZ-based colleagues, though all the men were subsequently released on bail. But earlier this month it emerged that Dotcom was accused of breaching the conditions of his bail, resulting in new restrictions being put into place.

And earlier today, according to Torrentfreak, a slightly delayed hearing took place to consider in more detail the bail break accusations that have been made by the New Zealand authorities – some of which seemingly date back to 2012 – amidst reports prosecutors have requested Dotcom be put back behind bars. Reporting of the hearing has been restricted so the specifics of the discussions are not known, though no decision was made regarding Dotcom’s bail moving forward and all parties are now due to regroup tomorrow.

Earlier this week, at the unBound Digital conference in London, Dotcom, speaking via video link, revealed that the reason he recently lost his legal reps in New Zealand was because of his finances, he simply can’t afford to pay his attorneys’ legal fees anymore having, he said, run up legal costs of $10 million already.

“I’m officially broke right now”, Dotcom said, a message perhaps partly aimed at the movie studios and record companies who have questioned the sources of the Mega founder’s perceived wealth, given all his MegaUpload assets were meant to have been frozen in 2012. Dotcom also claimed that it’s no coincidence that the bail break claims were being made by prosecutors now that he was without legal representation in New Zealand, even though some of the allegations date back over two years.

Said Dotcom, according to The Register, “My legal team has recently resigned because I ran out of money after spending $10 million to try and defend myself. [The US government] have certainly managed to drain my resources… and without lawyers I’m defenceless so they use that opportunity to try to get my bail revoked”.