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Twentieth Century Fox accuses Kim Dotcom of breaching court order on frozen MegaUpload funds

By | Published on Wednesday 27 July 2016


Movie studio Twentieth Century Fox has accused former MegaUpload chief Kim Dotcom of breaching a court order relating to the funds frozen when his former business was shut down by the US authorities in 2012.

Millions of dollars were seized in multiple territories as MegaUpload was shut down and Dotcom and some of his former colleagues were arrested in New Zealand over allegations of money laundering, racketeering and copyright infringement.

Since then, Dotcom and his lawyers have successfully sought to unfreeze some of those funds to cover his living and legal costs, though the courts are still overseeing all the remaining monies linked to the former MegaUpload business.

The big music and movie companies take a particular interest in any legal wranglings around the seized funds because they are suing Dotcom et al for copyright infringement, and they want there to be a big pile of cash ready and waiting should they prevail in that litigation and be awarded mega-bucks damages by the courts.

And to that end, lawyer Matt Sumpter, representing the Fox film company, recently told the New Zealand courts that a recent financial transaction involving Dotcom was in violation of the order freezing his assets. The transaction at the heart of the complaint was a $220,000 loan Dotcom had taken from his lawyers on behalf of a trust for his children.

According to RNS, Sumpter says the loan basically amounts to contempt of court, and he wants the judge to “remind Mr Dotcom about his obligations”. But Dotcom’s own lawyer disputes the Fox man’s claims, arguing that the loan “was a new asset, not covered by the original freezing order”.

The latest legal skirmish between Hollywood and the MegaUpload man comes ahead of the latter’s appeal against a court decision late last year which said that the American authorities could extradite Dotcom et al to face those aforementioned charges in a US courtroom. A hearing to consider that appeal is scheduled for next month.