updated 09:00 pm EST, Fri February 17, 2012
Megaupload faces more US charges
The charges against Megaupload grew late Thursday after it was targeted with additional and potentially more difficult to overcome charges. US officials accused Megaupload of directly producing copies of content from other sites, such as videos on YouTube, with the intent of redistributing it without permission. The claims vary from those that had focused on allegations of more conventional media piracy.
Along with the new charges, evidence also emerged supporting claims that Megaupload was primarily a one-way host than sharing. About 66.6 million actual users existed, or a third of the 180 million Megaupload claimed, and only 5.86 million were known to have uploaded files.
One of the defense attorneys, Ira Rothken, shrugged off the new charges and claimed that the government was trying to exaggerate the site of the case without having more material to work from.
The site is currently in limbo, having been shut down and its founder Kim Dotcom having both his assets frozen and bail denied. Megaupload is known to have included legitimate files in its mix, but evidence has suggested that staff inspected uploads, looked for content they knew was likely illegal, and downloaded it for themselves. Most of its defense has been based both on its taking action after takedown requests and the assertion that most of its uploads were legitimate. [via Wall Street Journal]