The case against Kim Dotcom has fallen apart in recent weeks, with the US government refusing to give evidence ordered by a New Zealand judge and the raid on his home was ruled illegal.Now another twist. The New Zealand Herald reports that the judge overseeing extradition case against Kim has stepped down after making a comment referring to the US was the “enemy”.
Judge David Harvey, one of the leading experts on copyright in New Zealand, had made the comment at the Nethui conference about copyright and trade with the US last week, where he said referred to a tweet which had worked on a reference to cartoonist Walt Kelly.
The BBC has Judge Harvey’s full comments:
“Under TPP and the American Digital Millennium copyright provisions you will not be able to do that, that will be prohibited,” he said.
“If you do you will be a criminal, that’s what will happen.
“There are all sorts of ways this whole thing is being ramped up and if I could use Russell’s tweet from earlier on – we have met the enemy and he is US.”
While the comments were not widely reported at the time, an article in the New Zealand Herald on Monday publicized the comments and led to criticism.
The district court’s chief judge Jan-Marie Doogue explained Judge Harvey’s decision to step down:
“He recognises that remarks made in the context of a paper he delivered on copyright law at a recent internet conference could reflect on his impartiality and that the appropriate response is for him to step down from the case.”
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