‘Public trust betrayed’: Dotcom demands New Zealand apologize for extensive illegal spying
Kiwi officials have determined that the state spy agency that
monitored Mega founder Kim Dotcom broke the law in 88 similar
cases. Meanwhile Internet tycoon Dotcom is putting pressure on
officials to apologize for the wrongdoing.
Prime Minister John Key admitted the new information about the
Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) made for
“sobering reading” and is certain to hurt the agency’s
“I acknowledge this review will knock public confidence in
the GCSB,” said Key, who is the minister in charge of the
organization. “I expect the GCSB to always operate within the
Key ordered the review after a court ruled the GCSB’s
surveillance of Dotcom that came in the months before the January
2012 raid on his Auckland home constituted illegal spying. GCSB
officials insisted that the Dotcom controversy was an isolated
event and that a subsequent review was unnecessary.
Details of the 88 cases identified by investigators were not
made public but Dotcom took to his Twitter account to call on the
government to do the right thing. Key publicly apologized to Dotcom
after the ordeal last year.
“I’m surprised at the scale of the breaches,” the
Megaupload founder wrote. “The Prime Minister should apologize
to those people too and inform the targets.”
Dotcom agreed with the opinion of New Zealand’s Labor party,
which called for a wider report on the government’s intelligence
policies, adding that it was the “worst feeling” upon
learning he’d been spied on. A court previously ruled it to be
within Dotcom’s rights to sue the government for damages.
“These people have to know what happened to them,” Dotcom
told The Dominion Post. “They need to have an option to take the
GCSB to court. It might have an effect on whatever happened to
them. And it’s really important at this point in time to really
have a thorough independent inquiry into the whole
Dotcom, 39, has long been the target of the US Department of Justice, which alleges that he’s cost US copyright owners over $500 million by facilitating Internet piracy.