The Megaupload Lifestyle- Photos of the Police Seizing Cars, & Computers from the Founder’s Mansion.
In case you were wondering if the guys that ran Megaupload were making tons of money, this might just answer your question.
The site was charged by the US Department of Justice is reproducing and distributing infringing copies of all types of copyrighted works, including movies, TV programs, music, software and books. Just as the details of the charges were being handed down in the United States, the New Zealand authorities went to work seizing the goods of the company founder, Kim Dotcom (government name Kim Schmitz). Globally, in personal and company assets they were able to repo about $50 Million worth of goods. This included computers, tons of servers cash and cars.
Thanks to the effort of Elliot Kember, an Internet Marketer he captured the event an uploaded some of the pictures on the net. ….hmmmm. A little irony there?
JUST HOW BIG WAS MEGAUPLOAD?
The site was “Obese”. It had more than 150 Million registered users and 50 Million Unique visitors per day. It was responsible for 4% of ALL INTERNET TRAFFIC!!!
HOW YOU LIVIN?
They were living large. Megaupload was reported to have earned $175 Million and cost copyright holders as much as $5 Million. So far seven people and 2 different corporations have been charged.
The police took $4.8 Million in cars alone. Amongst those were a Rolls-Royce, A Phantom Drophead Coupe, and a 1959 Pink Cadillac to name a few. Some of the license plates were digs at the feds, they read: HACKERS, CEO, MAFIA, GOD and one even said POLICE.
THE OPERATION, LED BY KIM DOTCOM
Or Kim Schmitz or Kim Tim Jim. Only 37 and was filthy Rich. He lived in both Hong Kong and New Zealand. He was the only owner of the 2nd company charged Vestor Limited, which owned his rights to the Mega-affiliated sites. There was no wiggle room for Mr. Dotcom.
It was a Global operation, ran by young officials worldwide. The following people went down with Kim.
- Chief Marketing Officer: Finn Batato
- Age: 38
- Residency: Germany
- Head of Business Development: Sven Echternach
- Age: 39
- Residency: Germany
- Chief Technical Officer, Co-founder, Director : Mathias Ortmann
- Residency: Germany and Hong Kong
- Age: 40
- Software Programmer: Andrus Nomm
- Residency: Turkey & Estonia
- Age: 32
- Head of Programming and Software development: Bram Van Der Kolk
- Residency: Netherlands and New Zealand
- Age: 29
The raid took place at Kim Dotcom’s mansion. It took 76 officers from Auckland and 4 FBI officers with help from the Armed Offenders squad.
There were 15 people in the home where they were arrested, said to be all family, friends and employees.
When neighbors heard the helicopter they just assumed it was the personal helicopter of Kim Dotcom, which is parked in the back.
More than NZ$10m has also been seized from NZ financial institutions. These have been secured by New Zealand’s Official Assignee pending the outcome of legal proceedings.
“I thought it was his private helicopter, which is parked up behind the trees, and I thought he was going out for breakfast, as he sometimes does.
“I thought ‘this is going on a bit long’ and it was a bit annoying at that time of the morning and so I got up and realised it was a police helicopter. It was there for about an hour and then my friend texted me that a lot of cops had arrived.”
She had never met him but sometimes saw him driving in his car.
“And everything’s in black, they all dress in black. It’s very surreal.”
Now that they have been apprehended the US will do the dirty work.
“All the accused have been indicted in the United States. We will continue to work with the US authorities to assist with the extradition proceedings.”
CHARGES….DON’T DROP THE SOAP
The charges are steep. They can see a maximum penalty of:
- 20 years in prison for conspiracy and commit racketeering
- 5 Years in prison on conspiracy to commit copyright infringement
- 20 Years on conspiracy to commit money laundering
- 5 Years on each, each, (I said “E-A-C-H) of the copyright infringement charges.
This is a landmark case and will set the precedence for things to come. As an owner of 50 sites myself, I will be watching this one closely.