Morgan Tait

Morgan Tait is the NZ Herald's consumer affairs reporter.

Inside Kim Dotcom's mind

New book spells out internet magnate's death fears, love for wife and lack of luxury in NZ

Kim Dotcom says his wife Mona is the love of his life. Photo / Duncan Brown
Kim Dotcom says his wife Mona is the love of his life. Photo / Duncan Brown

Internet tycoon Kim Dotcom has revealed fears for his life, his burning love for his wife and belief that New Zealand lacks extravagance fit for the mega-rich.

The Secret Life of Kim Dotcom: Spies, Lies and the War for the Internet - to be released on Monday - sheds light on the opulent and embattled life of the self-made multimillionaire.

Mr Dotcom reveals telling a friend of his perfect bill of health and urging, "Don't just let it go", if he were to die in the wake of criminal investigations into his file-sharing firm Megaupload.

"... I think how easy it would be to just snipe me in the head from behind. How easy it would be to sneak in and inject me with some s***," he told the book's author, Herald senior journalist David Fisher.

Click here to read an exclusive extract from the book

From a violent upbringing in Germany to his early fascination with computers and raking in more than $40 million a year, the 39-year-old entrepreneur speaks candidly about giving up his "playboy" lifestyle when he met the love of his life in a Manila nightclub.

He lived a life of parties on private jets and superyachts with "armies of girls" but abandoned that, along with carbohydrates, to woo the 25-year-old Filipina beauty.

"I've always been a playboy. I've always had a lot of girls, a lot of fun and I didn't care too much about having a relationship. I just wanted to have fun. When I met Mona, all of that changed."

He lost 45kg while courting Mona, but found it again once he tasted her cooking, and their whirlwind romance moved to marriage.

"I've not betrayed her once and I can't say that of any other relationship I have had. I would never do it because I really found my soulmate and the love of my life."

The couple now have five children, all conceived through IVF.

Mr Dotcom's flippant attitude to wealth and money was sparked by a near-death car accident in Germany in his youth. "For me, money was there to be spent, to have a great life because it could end at any time."

Despite deciding to raise his children in New Zealand's most expensive home, the $30 million Chrisco mansion in Coatesville, he criticised the lack of luxury available.

"If you are used to money and you are used to a good lifestyle, New Zealand doesn't really have much to offer ... It is all kind of mediocre."

Friends visiting Auckland scoffed at the city's nightlife, he said.

He also spoke of Kiwis' attitudes towards him, legal battles with the media, a frosty reception by neighbours and an overwhelming suspicion he was granted residency here only for the convenience of the US Government.

He also criticised the 50 New Zealand staff employed to work at the mansion for their constant infighting and complaining. "It's almost like signs, like there was a higher power telling us not to stay here. We should have just listened to that."


$6m damages hearing

Kim Dotcom's extradition case is still months away - but first he is taking the Government to court in a $6 million damages case.

A month-long hearing scheduled for March will put a price tag on the mistakes made by police and other government departments working at the request of the FBI.

The FBI sought Mr Dotcom and three others on charges of internet piracy. Court hearings have exposed errors and even illegality by New Zealand's electronic and spy agency, the GCSB.

The hearing comes after efforts by Mr Dotcom's lawyers to gain discovery information related to the case - a legal exercise which could reveal the inner workings of the police and intelligence operations.

The extradition hearing is scheduled for April, the most recent date after a string of postponements. It promises bombshells, coming in an election year with Mr Dotcom aiming to highlight what he says is political interference in the extradition process.

Mr Dotcom has said he will reveal evidence Prime Minister John Key knew of his presence in New Zealand before the raid, which Mr Key has consistently denied.

- NZ Herald

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