Internet entrepreneur and flamboyant personality Kim Dotcom lost his latest attempt to avoid extradition to the United States to face criminal charges. New Zealand’s Court of Appeal on Thursday upheld an earlier court ruling that said Dotcom was eligible to be given to US authorities. The court also ruled that three of Dotcom’s former colleagues could be handed over as well.
Who is Dotcom?
Kim has a long background that includes fancy cars, video games, and a whole lot of criminal investigations. Dotcom was born in Germany, and through his young adult life became heavily involved in different technologies. At one point, even being called the world’s “largest tech entrepreneurs.”
As a teenager, Dotcom claimed that he broke into the security systems of NASA and the Pentagon. German authorities started to investigate Dotcom, and he was forced to flee the country. He ran to Thailand, but was found and sent back to Germany.
Somehow Dotcom left Germany again and ran to Hong Kong. From Hong Kong, he started to visit New Zealand and set up a luxurious lifestyle including a mansion and luxury cars. Shortly after New Zealand gave Dotcom residency, it was discovered that he donated millions of dollars to public officials.
Why does the U.S. care?
It was Dotcom’s site Megaupload that started getting him in the most trouble. The site became extremely popular, and users began storing TV shows, movies, songs, and other copyrighted material on the site. The site even had 150 employees and US$175 million in revenues. States started suing Dotcom and calling for his arrest.
The US was able to shut down the sight over six years ago, and the US government was able to bring charges of conspiracy, racketing, and money laundering against the Dotcom and a few of his men.
For a while, Dotcom was able to fight the charges and stay in his mega-mansion spending his days making music.
He argued that he couldn’t be held responsible for how people chose to use his site and that he didn’t have business in the US. However, the higher courts didn’t agree with him, and now he could face decades in prison.