Big Content had a bit of an unpleasant surprise this morning when it woke up to discover that a Kiwi court had given the founder of Megaupload.com access to more than $250,000 of his frozen assets.
Kim Dotcom is awaiting extradition to the US on a charge of being a pirate. After failing to get him locked up while his hearing was considered, Big Content was happy that while under house arrest at least he didn’t have a cent to fight them with.
Now, the NZ court has freed nearly a quarter of a million dollars in frozen assets to pay for living expenses, including nannies and bodyguards.
The money will cover lease costs of a multi-million dollar mansion outside of Auckland, wages for staff and other living expenses such as phones and power.
According to Reuters, the New Zealand High Court granted Dotcom an interim payment of around NZ$32,000 to cover immediate living costs, as well as the use of a car, pending a final decision on continuing financial support.
Dotcom has three children and his wife is due to give birth to twins late next month.
The United States claims that Dotcom is an extreme flight risk because he has had multiple passports, sources of funds, access to various means of travel, and a previous history of fleeing to avoid criminal charges. However, the court said that was rubbish because he was forced to wear an electronic bracelet.
Big Content will be a little surprised that New Zealand is not doing as it is told. The legal system in NZ is not bad, and as far as it is concerned, there has not been any evidence that the charges against Dotcom are correct. If, by some fluke, he is actually innocent, then the NZ justice system would have helped ruin a perfectly reasonable businessman’s life, on the whim of Big Content. It is something that the Kiwis would not be happy with.