News: UPDATE: Megaupload Boss Stays Put, Denied Bail

Thursday, Jan 26, 2012 11:50AM

Written by Biz Jones

The founder of former file-sharing website Megaupload, Kim Dotcom, is being forced to remain in custody after having a bail request denied this week in New Zealand.

According to reports, there is too much of a risk to allow Dotcom temporary freedom.

On Wednesday, the presiding judge, Judge David McNaughton, denied Dotcom's bail requests on the grounds that he presented a flight risk. "With significant determination and financial resources, flight risk remains a real and significant possibility which I cannot discount and bail is declined," wrote McNaughton in a 20-page statement. It also seems that Dotcom is no stranger to criminal activity, to which he even joked about in newly-revealed e-mails to his neighbors. "I am a former hacker" who was once convicted of insider trading," he wrote. "In all seriousness: My wife, two kids and myself love New Zealand and 'We come in peace." He then went on to jokingly offer to help neighbors with insider stock tips and tax fraud. Thus far, the U.S. has charged seven men, including Dotcom, in the conspiracy case and are seeking extradition for four of which, who were arrested in New Zealand. (VIBE)

Earlier this week, Dotcom appeared in court hoping to be granted bail.

Kim Dotcom will remain in custody at least temporarily after a New Zealand judge delayed a decision on whether the founder of the file-sharing site Megaupload.com should be permitted to be released on bail. At a hearing Monday in Auckland, New Zealand, Dotcom denied that he is guilty of the Internet piracy charges he is facing in the United States. The New Zealand Herald reports that Dotcom's attorney, Paul Davidson, argued that his client should be eligible for bail because "he is not a person who is inherently motivated to disappear or breach conditions. There is no flight risk." (Washington Post)

Despite his attorney's plea, Dotcom was forced to remain in custody.

Judge David McNaughton said the bail application was too complicated for an immediate ruling, adding he would issue a written decision no later than Wednesday. "Given the breadth of issues covered in this bail application and the seriousness of the issues, I am going to reserve my decision," the judge said. U.S. authorities want to extradite Dotcom on charges he masterminded a scheme that made more than $175 million in a few short years by copying and distributing music, movies and other copyrighted content without authorization. Megaupload's lawyer has said the company simply offered online storage. (Reuters)

Although hitmaker Swizz Beatz was not directly connected to Megaupload, he apparently showed an interest in the company prior to the FBI's recent take down of the site.

Megaupload lawyer Ira Rothken didn't dispute Beatz's position in the organization and acknowledged that Beatz persuaded Kanye West, Will.i.am and Sean "Diddy" Combs to participate in a promotional video for the site. Rothken changed his tune Friday, telling the blog Venturebeat that "[Beatz] was negotiating to become the CEO, but it was never official." Rothken didn't get back to us to explain his altered view. Sources tell us Beatz has been CEO of the company for close to a year. (New York Post)

Check out the Megaupload promo song down below:

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