Internet entrepreneur Kim Dotcom will go to the Court of Appeal after losing a second bid against extradition to the US on charges of racketeering, wire fraud and money laundering.
But the German-born founder of Megaupload has been successful in his bid to block extradition related on copyright infringement charges, all which date back to his arrest in 2012.
Dotcom’s legal team say while one major part of their bid was successful, the overall outcome is “extremely disappointing”.
He was arrested following raids in January 2012, alongside co-accused Mathias Ortmann, Bran van der Kolk and Finn Botato, and accused of defrauding copyright holders and paying users to upload illegal files.
The US Federal Bureau of Investigation has led the investigation and claim Megaupload is a criminal conspiracy that earned the men $NZ175 million ($A164 million).
They’re each facing 13 charges.
High Court Justice Murray Gilbert on Monday released findings upholding an earlier District Court decision that the four could be extradited on the racketeering, wire fraud and money laundering charges.
But he supported an argument put forward by Dotcom’s legal team that he couldn’t be extradited on copyright infringement grounds because the allegation against him is not a criminal offence in New Zealand.
Instead, in his more than 360-page judgment, Justice Gilbert found conspiracy to commit copyright infringement amounted to conspiracy to defraud, and that was an extradition offence.
Ultimately he found Dotcom and his co-accused were still eligible to surrender.
Dotcom’s lawyer Ron Mansfield said the decision meant the case was no longer the “largest criminal copyright case”.
“As we have said all along, there is no such offence under our Copyright Act. We were right.”
He said the final hurdle to overturning extradition will be determined by the Court of Appeal.
“We remain confident that this last point which would prevent extradition in this complex and unprecedented legal case, will be resolved in Kim’s favour in a manner consistent with parliament’s intent, international law and importantly, one might think, the United States’ own law,” Mr Mansfield said.