The US government’s bid to act as Big Content’s personal police force is coming unstuck.
Its lastest bid to extradite Megaupload boss Kim Dotcom from New Zealand for alleged online piracy has been delayed for a second time. It now looks like Dotcom will be waiting for a hearing until August next year.
Dotcom was arrested in January for alleged online piracy and was supposed to go to court in August. This was then pushed back to March next year amid legal wrangling over evidence disclosure.
Now, a spokesperson for Dotcom’s Auckland-based barrister Paul Davison told AFP that the court had rescheduled the hearing again to August 2013. She did not say why.
New Zealand’s foreign intelligence agency, the Government Communications Security Bureau, is under investigation for illegally spying on Dotcom ahead of his arrest in a raid on his Auckland mansion in January.
The fairly small spook service probably believed it was acting legally. Ever since New Zealand stood up to the US over its nuclear weapons free policy in the 1980s, the government has been trying to butter up the Americans and return to being their number one chum in the pacific.
However, news that its spooks were illegally spying on the perceived enemies of Big Content started to be embarrassing for the New Zealand government.
Prime Minister John Key earlier this year issued a public apology to Dotcom, acknowledging the German national should have been off-limits to the agency because he holds New Zealand residency.
It was the latest in a string of setbacks for the case against Dotcom, who remains free on bail in New Zealand, including a court ruling that the search warrants used in the raid on his mansion were illegal.
Big Content wants Dotcom jailed as if he was a gangster. Apparently it could not make terrorism charges stick.