David Fisher

David Fisher is a senior reporter for the NZ Herald.

Dotcom secures $6m for lawyers, living costs

Kim Dotcom. Photo / Steven McNicholl
Kim Dotcom. Photo / Steven McNicholl

Kim Dotcom has secured the use of $6 million from seized funds to pay for his lawyers and cover living costs.

A decision from the High Court at Auckland has cleared the way for Dotcom to pay current and future legal bills of $3.6m - a decision which has trumped efforts by the police to shut down the internet tycoon's access to seized funds.

The money comes from a $10m government bond which was seized by the government on behalf of the United States as part of its internet piracy case against Dotcom and those involved in his Megaupload filesharing company. The United States position is that all the money and assets of Dotcom were gained through criminal copyright violation by internet piracy.

The ruling from Justice Judith Potter has also allowed Dotcom to sell some of the cars which were seized during the January raid. Among the vehicles to be sold is his modified and much-loved Mercedes E500 and a 2008 Rolls Royce Coupe.

The money freed up by the high court covers $2.6 million in current legal fees, another $1 million of future costs and $1 million rent for the $30 million north Auckland mansion where he and his family live.

Dotcom and three colleagues from Megaupload are facing extradition to the United States on a range of charges stemming from the Megaupload case.

The case is set to be heard in March.

- NZ Herald

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