David Fisher

David Fisher is a senior reporter for the NZ Herald.

Dotcom raid: Police concerned about looking 'heavy-handed'

File photo / Doug Sherring
File photo / Doug Sherring

Internal police documents from its elite anti-terror specialists expressed concern its assault on Kim Dotcom's mansion would be seen as "heavy-handed'' and "over the top''.

Details of the planning of the raid on Dotcom's rented Coatesville mansion in January were revealed in evidence to the High Court at Auckland today, along with a rejection of claims by the internet tycoon that he was assaulted during the raid.

The testimony came from a sergeant in the special tactics group (STG) who was in charge of leading the search for Dotcom.

The officer, whose name is suppressed, talked about the lead up to the raid, including the security evaluation that was done before the raid. The officer confirmed a STG document which said there was a need to balance the execution of the warrants with the "heavy-handed'' tactical approach.

The document, referred to by Dotcom's lawyer Paul Davison, also described the use of a helicopter as being "over the top''.

The officer said the primary objective was to stop evidence being destroyed.

He was told by Mr Davison it took 13 minutes to find Dotcom.

The hearing in the High Court is part of the Crown bid to overturn a finding that invalid search warrants were used in the raid on Dotcom's Coatesville mansion.

The January 20 raid followed an FBI request for help with its global investigation into alleged copyright violation by Dotcom's Megaupload filesharing company.

Meanwhile, CCTV footage from Dotcom's mansion of the police raid there has been shown to the High Court in Auckland.

The footage shows two helicopters landing at the mansion in the early morning of January 20.

It then shows five members of the Special Tactics Group rushing towards the main house.

The footage also shows officers being deployed at the property from several vans and cars.

- Additional reporting Newstalk ZB

- NZ Herald

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