Judge dismisses Dotcom conspiracy theories

David Farrar

3 News reports:

Mega founder Kim Dotcom been denied access to evidence against him to be used in his upcoming extradition hearing.

Dotcom had applied for documents held by the Security Intelligence Service (SIS), Immigration New Zealand, police, Customs, Corrections and the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB), but a District Court decision released today has dismissed the application. …

In declining the other documents, Judge Dawson said the evidence and submissions “fell well short” of what was needed to consider granting the applications.

He also said there was “no reasonable basis” for granting the application for the documents.

“It bears all the hallmarks of a fishing expedition that would involve an extensive amount of time and resources to satisfy with a very low likelihood of it producing evidence relevant to the extradition hearing.”

It is worth quoting the judgement:

[47] To date, there is no evidence of any nexus between the Prime Minister’s meeting with the CEO of Warner Bros with Mr Dotcom’s residency applications other than the coincidence of the times of events pointed to by him. There is also an alternate explanation that could be advanced. Mr Dotcom had become impatient over what he perceived as delays with his residency application and informed INZ that his application could be withdrawn if it was not granted by 1 November 2010. The residency application was granted on 30 October 2010. It is feasible that INZ granted the residency application of a high net-worth person who was pressuring them for a decision.

[48]The respondents need to prove some nexus between Mr Dotcom being granted residency and his claim of untoward political pressure being placed upon immigration officials to grant his residency other than hypothesised coincidence. In addition, they would need to show links between the INZ, NZSIS, the Prime Minister, the CEO of Warner Bros and the Applicant [the US government, my brackets] which showed the Applicant’s involvement in the actions of the New Zealand agencies. They would then need to show some illegal action by the Applicant indicating there was an abuse of process that would lead this court to provide some sanction against the Applicant in this case. To date they have not done so. Nor has it been shown that INZ and the NZSIS were acting as agencies for the Applicant at this time.”

[49] The Respondents’ applications are based upon Mr Dotcom’s theory which is based upon evidence which has a plausible alternative explanation. They lack any “air of reality” as they rely upon a perceived coincidence. These applications are in the nature of a fishing expedition, made in the hope of flushing out evidence which may be useful to the Respondents. Even if it was successful it is highly unlikely that it would be evidence that might assist the Respondents to counter any of the Applicants’ evidence in the ROC. If evidence of improper political involvement was found, it would not impact upon the extradition hearing. It may or may not impact upon other court proceedings, but it is not the role of this court to grant discovery orders that may or may not be relevant to other proccedings.

The Judge must have missed seeing the Campbell Live programme!

This is a major setback to Dotcom. His defence seems to be based on this conspiracy theory, and the court has said it has no air of reality. That’s strong language.

The extradition date is set for 7 July but one of the parties (I suspect Dotcom) has asked for a deferral – maybe hoping for a delay until Russel Norman is Minister of Justice!

Political commentator David Farrar posts at Kiwiblog.

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