A New Zealand judge has ruled that search warrants used to seize evidence in the Megaupload case were illegally broad and vague. Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom still faces a battle to avoid extradition to the U.S. but the search warrant ruling likely weakened the case, legal experts told Reuters today. The invalidated warrants included those that permitted the search of Dotcom’s home and the seizure of computer hard drives. The court also ruled the FBI’s copying of evidence and sending it to the U.S. was unlawful. The case is the FBI’s highest profile action against global copyright theft. Regarding the extradition of Dotcom, an authority on New Zealand law said there may still be enough evidence to convince a court to allow extradition. Dotcom was one of four men arrested during a dramatic January raid on his estate outside Auckland. Prosecutors allege Dotcom is the ringleader of a global piracy ring that has illegally copied and distribed music, movies and other copyrighted content. Dotcom’s lawyers say Megaupload only provided online storage.
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