Megaupload operators are now facing more charges in the United States after the country’s Department of Justice filed a new indictment that will charge them with further counts of wire fraud and criminal copyright infringement. According to the new superseding indictment, the defendants reproduced materials that were posted on other websites such as YouTube and then made them available for access on Megaupload.
The defendants in the case against Megaupload include two companies and seven people of which there was originally a five count indictment served on January 5th of this year. The original charges included conspiracy to commit copyright infringement, conspiracy to commit racketeering, conspiracy to commit money laundering, and two different counts of copyright infringement.
Since the charges were first announced, law enforcement has arrested seven people that were served indictments and have seized assets valued at about £30m. The seven people charged are Finn Batato, Mathias Ortmann, Kim Dotcom, Andrus Nomm, Sven Echternach, Bram Van Der Kolk, and Julus Bencko. Bail was denied for Dotcom, the founder of Megaupload, at the beginning of February in New Zealand where he lives.
The new indictment also offers new information about a Megaupload super user known as W who uploaded about 17,000 files to the website and was the subject of many take down notices that concerned copyright infringement. During the years of 2008 and 2009, W received about £2150 from Megaupload for his uploading. New assets will also be seized as a result of the superseding indictment including bank accounts, property, jewellery, watches, and jet skis.