About a month ago Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom as well as others involved in the organization were arrested in a raid. At the time, Mister Dotcom was denied bail by New Zealand courts on the grounds that his lifestyle and funds made him a flight risk. It seems that decision has been reversed and he has been released on bail with a number of conditions.
The original denial of bail was held up until February 22 when the United States was set to file paperwork in an effort to have Kim Dotcom extradited to the US for prosecution. That deadline seems to have been extended and Kim Dotcom’s bail situation was reversed.
Dotcom is now out on bail under a few key conditions. First, he is not allowed to travel further than 80km from his home unless there is an emergency. Second, helicopters are not allowed anywhere near his property. Third, he is not allowed online.
The reason for bail being granted appears to be that investigators changed their mind about Dotcom being a flight risk. Investigators found him to be “highly disorganized” in money matters and most of his assets have been seized anyway. It seems silly to imagine that Dotcom doesn’t have some resources stashed away somewhere for exactly this kind of situation, but because the police couldn’t prove any type of fallback plan existed, there was no choice but to release him on bail.
The US now has until March 2 to submit paperwork to have Dotcom and the three other people arrested extradited. The hearing for extradition isn’t until August. The US added wire fraud to the list of charges last week, which already include copyright infringement among others. Dotcom’s lawyers are fighting hard against the extradition calling the whole thing a civil case and accusing the US of overplaying the situation.