Not a “white paper”

The Herald reports:

Kim Dotcom has called for an investigation into the FBI case against Megaupload in a legal review which accuses Prime Minister John Key of being misled by the United States.

The “White Paper” released by Mr Dotcom last night also alleges the illegal spying by the GCSB went on for 10 days longer than the spy bureau has previously admitted.

The 39-page document written by his legal team aims to dissect the FBI investigation against him and three Megaupload colleagues arrested on criminal copyright charges last year. It is entitled “Megaupload, the Copyright Lobby, and the Future of Digital Rights: The United States versus You (and Kim Dotcom)”.

It calls for investigations by US Senate oversight committees, linking the motives for the prosecution to Hollywood studios’ political contributions and support for President Barack Obama.

It’s not a “white paper” with or without the quote marks. White papers are government documents. It is a PR document put out by the defence team for someone who has been charged with multiple criminal offences. It isn’t even a legal document – it is purely a PR document. But for this it get heralded as some sort of official white paper, and gets Mr Dotcom a free q&a session on the Herald website. I wonder if they plan to do this for all other people charged with criminal offences in other countries?

Dotcom is trying to turn this into a political issue, rather than a legal one. On the politics of copyright law, i actually agree with much of what he says. But I also believe you try to act within the law and accept consequences if you do not.

Whether the charges laid by the US Government are valid under our extradition treaty is a legal issue to be determined by the NZ courts. If they find they are valid, then he should be extradited – just as the US extradites people from the US to NZ if they face criminal charges here.

If he is extradited to the US, then his guilt or innocence is a matter for the US courts and/or juries. Again it is a legal matter.

If Mr Dotcom wins his legal cases, then as far as I am concerned he is welcome to stay in NZ, despite his less than reputable past and previous criminal offending. But justice should not be decided in the media by PR strategies. The charges he faces are legal matters for the NZ and then the US courts to determine.

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