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MegaUpload files papers in Hong Kong to get assets back

By | Published on Thursday 24 April 2014


After a New Zealand court recently ordered the authorities there to return seized assets to MegaUpload founder Kim Dotcom, the defunct file-transfer company is now trying to get its corporate assets back in Hong Kong.

As much previously reported, police in New Zealand seized personal property belonging to MegaUpload founder Dotcom in January 2012 at the request of the US authorities, who were in the process of shutting down the digital firm’s operations over allegations it and its management team were liable for mass copyright infringement.

At the same time the Americans requested that the Hong Kong authorities freeze the MegaUpload company’s assets, it being incorporated in the Chinese special administrative region. Dotcom’s legal reps have long questioned the legality of that move, and have now submitted court papers demanding that the assets be returned.

Team Mega maintain that the Americans legal assault on the controversial company is illegal, because under US law a criminal summons against a company must be handed over on home soil, and MegaUpload never had a base in the States, and none of its directors live there (though many of the servers the firm used were in the jurisdiction).

US officials see this as a technicality, but MegaUpload’s chief legal man Ira Rothken insists it poses a major problem for the American’s legal case, and – with over two years now having passed without receiving a summons – that this is grounds for the former company’s seized assets to be returned to their owners.

Rothken says that if that was to happen, his clients would have the funds to reboot up the long offline MegaUpload servers (well, those that haven’t been wiped and repurposed) so to take a back up for evidence purposes, and ultimately to reconnect former customers with any legit files they once had stored on the storage platform.

The High Court in Hong Kong has given the region’s Department Of Justice until 4 Jun to reply to MegaUpload’s filing.