Anna Leask

Anna Leask is a police reporter for the New Zealand Herald.

Judge gives Dotcom cash and car back

Vehicles worth $6 million were seized from Kim Dotcom. Photo / Natalie Slade
Vehicles worth $6 million were seized from Kim Dotcom. Photo / Natalie Slade

Kim Dotcom will have more than $300,000 in seized funds returned to him, and a further $20,000 deposited into his bank account each month to cover his living expenses.

The internet tycoon won an appeal in the High Court against the seizure of some of his money and assets after an FBI-led raid at his Coatesville mansion in January.

The United States Government is seeking to extradite Dotcom and three New Zealand-based associates on charges including copyright infringement and wire fraud relating to the file-sharing website Megaupload.

Millions of dollars of assets and bank accounts in Dotcom's business empire were frozen after his arrest in January.

But last month the German-born father of three went to court seeking expense payments to cover rent on the mansion, maintenance costs and salaries for staff, including nannies.

Yesterday, Justice Judith Potter ruled Dotcom should receive $20,000 a month for living expenses.

That money will come from interest on the $10 million in New Zealand Government bonds he bought when he moved here.

The first payment will be made today, and backdated to March 1.

Justice Potter also ruled that $301,758.70 that Dotcom had in a Rabobank account at the time of the seizures be returned to him at the rate of $40,000 a month.

Dotcom is also allowed use of one of his fleet of luxury vehicles, a 2011 Mercedes-Benz G55 AMG truck.

It was among $6 million of vehicles including 15 Mercedes-Benz, a pink 1959 Cadillac and a Rolls-Royce Phantom seized in January.

But the judge ruled that although Dotcom can drive the truck, it will remain under the control of the Official Assignee with the other seized assets.

Justice Potter is also expected to make a ruling soon on whether Dotcom will get the rest of his seized property back after she declared the original restraining order police used invalid.

- NZ Herald

© Copyright 2014, APN New Zealand Limited

Assembled by: (static) on red akl_n6 at 02 Aug 2014 13:50:14 Processing Time: 455ms