35 Comments

Summary:

The FBI has shut down MegaUploadcom with help of law enforcement agencies around the world. The bureau also indicted seven people involved with MegaUpload, including the company’s founder Kim Schmitz. Four of the seven have been arrested, but it’s unclear whether Schmitz is also in custody.

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Updated. The FBI has indicted MegaUpload on racketeering and criminal copyright infringement charges, according to a report by the Wall Street Journal. The FBI apparently got help from law enforcement authorities around the world, as MegaUpload’s servers have been taken down. The WSJ is also reporting that four people have been arrested in New Zealand.

It’s unclear at this point whether Kim Schmitz, who has recently been calling himself Kim Dotcom, is amongst those arrested. Schmitz used to live in Germany, but relocated to New Zealand a few years ago. Also unclear is whether the FBI will charge Alicia Keys’ husband Kasseem Dean a.k.a. Swizz Beatz, who was outed as MegaUpload’s new CEO by the New York Post yesterday.

Update: The FBI has confirmed that local authorities have in  fact arrested Kim Schmitz as well as three other MegaUpload employees. There are outstanding arrest warrants for three additional employees.

Update 2: The FBI has said in a press release that it and other law enforcement agencies have executed 20 search warrants in eight countries, seizing $50 million in assets and taking down MegaUpload’s servers. The agency is alleging that MegaUpload generated more than $175 million in profits and caused “more than half a billion dollars in harm to copyright owners.”

Update 3: Raids were conducted in New Zealand, Hong Kong, the U.S., the Netherlands, the U.K., Germany and Canada, according to a Justice department press release.

Update 4: The full indictment is now available online.

Update 5: Read all about the juicy details in the indictment.

This is a developing story, please check back for updates.

  1. Daniel J. Newman Thursday, January 19, 2012

    Sad news. Interested to see how this plays out.

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  2. Martin Czajkowski Thursday, January 19, 2012

    Its not the first time that Kim “Kimble” Schmitz will be in prison :)

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    1. I was thinking the same thing lol! in the early 2000s he was sent down for something similar. He still hasn’t lost weight. I always get the feeling that he’s going to blow up.He always looks constipated.

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  3. That suck so hard :x

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  4. Zamora Ishkaru Pawz Thursday, January 19, 2012

    Really what the hell.

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  5. Roberto Ciamora Thursday, January 19, 2012

    its like having a wherehouse and allowing people to buy, sell and trade stolen property in it

    In the real world, you go to jail for that, shouldnt work any diffrent in cyberspace

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    1. Yeah, that’s true, in the other hand it will be mission impossible for the third world to buy original dvd that cost $15 to $30 or more (which is can be a half of his monthly earning lol), it will be like only rich people can have access to internet & original dvd’s & datas like music & programs…, which really sucks & not fair at all.
      thos stupid big corporation are already making billion of dollars even with piracy, why the hell do they want to kill the rest of the world just to get richer & richer !!!

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      1. So that is your excuse to steal?

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      2. Yes and no, rayw. Is that knowing something stealing? Like, for example, having a copy of a book, whitout paying, is stealing it? Even if it is not allowed to copy is not stealing. It is a kind of wrong but it is a wrong that humanly right. People need information and it should be a right. Don’t care if you had the idea first or what. Knowledge must not be a good. Should be a right. And art, as movies, books and music is knowledge too.

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    2. that analogy would make sense if digital goods were subject to the same scarcity as physical goods.

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      1. The analogy would make MORE sense, you mean, Sophi. Just because its logic is a bit tenuous doesn’t mean the overall point isn’t accurate.

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      2. Digital goods also cost money. And the “they are making enough money” is no reason to steal.

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    3. No, it’s not like that at all…

      If you want to make that type of analogy then it would be like prosecuting the wherehouse owner for not making -absolute certain- that any of the stuff the people store in their rented spaces were legally theirs.

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      1. Gigi Coutcout Friday, January 20, 2012

        Yes, but in this case the warehouse owner (Kim) is organizing the whole operation: he pays users to upload movie and gets paid by “premium” users.
        It’s a criminal organization.

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  6. Freedoms going RIGHT out of the window…

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    1. i agree with u..
      the freedom is gone and world is going isolated with those SOPA and PIPA..

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  7. See? You can go after pirates without SOPA/PIPA… so the reason for them again was… what?

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    1. So that the United States Of Assho…I mean America can increase their powerhold even more. And soon they’ll have a police which operates in every country…I long for a riot to end the US once and for all.

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      1. So sad to see someone think like this.

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  8. my life is over now.

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  9. It’s time for Internet 2.0 and freedom!

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  10. A really busy month – SOPA/PIPA, this MegaUpload thing, CricInfo-ESPN sending notices to users that viewed pirated streams in the past… A lot of action in the online piracy/copyright infringement front. While I’m not condoning piracy/copyright infringement, I wonder where it all will lead us to.

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    1. Anders Hofsten Friday, January 20, 2012

      worth noting is that the majority of the traffic on megaupload is legal. it’s like suing the postoffice because they delivered a box with a bomb in it.

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      1. word

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