throbber
Case 1:12-cr-00003-LO Document 1 Filed 01/05/12 Page 1 of 72 PageID# 1
`Case 1:12—cr—OOOO3—LO Document 1 Filed 01/05/12 Page 1 of 7
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`EASTERN DISTRICT OF VIRGINIA
`
`Alexandria Division
`
`Criminal No. I:l2CR3
`
`Count One: 18 U.S.C. § 1962(d) -
`Conspiracy to Commit
`Racketeering
`
`Count Two: 18 U.S.C. § 371 -
`Conspiracy to Commit Copyright
`Infringement
`
`Count Three: 18 U.S.C.§ 1956(h) -
`Conspiracy to Commit
`Money Laundering
`
`Count Four: 18 U.S.C. §§ 2, 2319;
`17 U.S.C. § 506 -
`Criminal Copyright Infringement By
`Distributing a Copyrighted Work
`Being Prepared for Commercial
`Distribution on a Computer Network
`& Aiding and Abetting of Criminal
`Copyright Infringement
`
`Count Five: 18 U.S.C. §§ 2, 2319;
`17 U.S.C. § 506 —
`Criminal Copyright Infringement By
`Electronic Means &
`
`Aiding and Abetting of Criminal
`Copyright Infringement
`
`UNDER SEAL
`
`) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) J ) ) ) ) ) )
`
`)
`)
`)
`)
`)
`
`I ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) )
`
`UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
`
`KIM DOTCOM,
`MEGAUPLOAD LIMITED,
`VESTOR LIMITED,
`FINN BATATO,
`JULIUS BENCKO,
`SVEN ECHTERNACI-I,
`MATHIAS ORTMANN,
`
`ANDRUS NOMM, and
`
`BRAM VAN DER KOLK,
`
`Defendants
`
`INDICTMENT
`
`JANUARY 2012 TERM — at Alexandria, Virginia
`
`THE GRAND JURY CHARGES THAT:
`
` IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE
`
`
`
`
`
`a»t".b!.-‘.r‘i.tfi=‘fi*°5!.*-*=
`
`
`
`

`
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`GENERAL ALLEGATIONS
`
`At all times relevant to this Indictment:
`
`1.
`
`KIM DOTCOM, MEGAUPLOAD LIMITED, VESTOR LIMITED, FINN
`
`BATATO, IULIUS BENCKO, SVEN ECHTERNACH, MATHIAS ORTMANN, ANDRUS
`
`NOMM, and BRAM VAN DER KOLK, the defendants, and others known and unknown to the
`
`Grand Jury, were members of the “Mega Conspiracy,” a worldwide criminal organization whose
`
`members engaged in criminal copyright infiingement and money laundering on a massive scale
`
`with estimated harm to copyright holders well in excess of $500,000,000 and reported income in
`
`excess of $175,000,000.
`
`2.
`
`Megauploadcom is a commercial website and service operated by the Mega
`
`Conspiracy that reproduces and distributes copies of popular copyrighted content over the
`
`Internet without authorization. Since at least September 2005, Megauploadcom has been used
`
`by the defendants and other members and associates of the Mega Conspiracy to willfully
`
`reproduce and distribute many millions of infringing copies ofcopyrighted works, including
`
`motion pictures, television programs, musical recordings, electronic books, images, video games,
`
`and other computer software. Over the more than five years of its existence, the Mega
`
`Conspiracy has aggressively expanded its operations into a large number of related Internet
`...fl;nn!-.xi:u.mn_.._
`
`businesses, which are connected directly to, or at least financially dependent upon, the criminal
`
`conduct associated with Megauploadcom.
`
`3.
`
`Megauploadcom was at one point in its history estimated to be the 13th most
`
`frequently visited website on the entire Internet. The site claims to have had more than one
`
`billion visitors in its history, more than 180,000,000 registered users to date, an average of
`
`

`
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`50 million daily visits, and to account for approximately four percent of the total traffic on
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`the Internet.
`
`4. ’s income comes primarily from two sources: premium
`
`subscriptions and online advertising. Premium subscriptions for Megauploadcom have been
`
`available for online purchase for as little as a few dollars per day or as much as approximately
`
`$260 for a lifetime. In exchange for payment-, the Mega Conspiracy provides the fast
`
`reproduction and distribution of infiinging copies of copyrighted works from its computer
`
`servers located around the world. Premium users of the site, a small percentage of the overall
`
`user base, are able to download and upload files with few, if any, limitations. Subscription fees
`
`collected during the existence of the Mega Conspiracy from premium users are estimated to be
`
`more than $150 million. Online advertising on Megauploadcom and its associated websites,
`
`which is heavily dependent on the popu1an'ty of copyright infiinging content to attract website
`
`visits, has further obtained more than $25 million for the Mega Conspiracy.
`
`5.
`The financial proceeds of Megauploadcom have been primarily directed to four
`sources. First, the Conspiracy has directed the bulk ofits revenues to the defendants, corporate
`
`entities they control, other co-conspirators, and employees for their private financial gain.
`
`Second, the Mega Conspiracy has spent millions of dollars developing and promoting
`
`Megauploadcom and complementary Internet sites and services, such as Megavideocom,
`
`Megaclick.com, Megapomcom, and a host of others (collectively the “Mega Sites”). Third, for
`
`much of its operation, the Mega Conspiracy has offered an “Uploader Rewards” Program, which
`
`promised premium subscribers transfers of cash and other financial incentives to upload popular
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`works, including copyrighted works, to computer servers under the Mega Conspiracy’s direct
`
`control and for the Conspiracy’s ultimate financial benefit. The more popular content that was
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`

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`present on Mega Conspiracy servers would increase the number of visitors and premium users
`
`that the Conspiracy could monetize. In total, the Mega Conspiracy directly paid uploaders
`
`millions of dollars through online payments. Fourth, the Mega Conspiracy spends millions of
`
`dollars per month on the infrastructure supporting their businesses, including the leasing of
`computers, hosting charges, and Internet bandwidth.
`I.n contrast to legitimate Internet
`
`distributors of copyrighted content, Mggg1p_lo_.ag<_:g_1n does not make any significant payments to
`
`the copyright owners of the many thousands of works that are willfully reproduced and
`
`distributed on the Mega Sites each and every day.
`6.
`Any Intemet user‘who goes to the Megauploadcom website can upload a
`
`computer file. Once that user has selected a file on their computer and clicks the “upload”
`
`button, Megauploadcom reproduces the file on at least one computer server it controls and
`
`provides the uploading user with a unique Uniform. Resource Locator (“URL”) link that allows
`
`anyone with the link to download the file. For example, a link distributed on December 3, 2006
`
`by defendant DOTCOM (www.megaupload.com/?d=BYl SXESV) links to" a musical recording
`
`by U.S. recording artist “50 Cent.” A single click on the link accesses a Megauploadcom
`
`download page that allows any Internet user to download a copy of the file from a computer
`
`server that is controlled by the Mega Conspiracy.
`
`7.
`
`Megauploadcom advertises itself as a “cyberlocker,” which is a private data
`
`storage provider. However, as part of the design of the service, the vast majority of
`
`Megauploadcom users do not have significant capabilities to store private content long-terrn.
`
`Unregistered anonymous users (referred to as “Non-Members” by the Conspiracy) are allowed to
`
`upload and download content files, but any Non-Member-uploaded content that is not
`
`downloaded within 21 days is permanently deleted. Similarly, registered free users (or
`
`

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`“Members”) are allowed to upload and download content files,‘ but each uploaded file must be .
`
`downloaded every 90 days.in order to remain on the system. Only premium users have a
`
`realistic chance of having any private long-term storage,’ since their files are not regularly
`
`deleted due to non-use. In contrast, when any type ofuser on gzggm uploads a copy
`
`of a popular file that is repeatedly downloaded, including infringing copies of copyrighted works
`
`available.for download, that file remains on Mega Conspiracy-controlled computers and is
`
`available for distribution by anyone who can locate an active link to the file.
`
`8.
`
`Once a user clicks on a link, the user is generally brought to a download page for
`
`the file. The download page contains online advertisements provided by the Conspiracy, which
`
`means that every download on Megaupload.com provides a financial gain to the Conspiracy that
`
`is directly tied to the download. The more popular the content, such as copies of well-known
`
`copyrighted works_, the more users that find their way to a Megauploadcom download page; the
`
`access of these additional users, in turn, makes the Mega Conspiracy more money. Because only
`
`a small percentage of Megauploadcom users pay for their use of the systems, Mega
`
`Conspiracy’s business strategy for advertising requires maximizing the number of online
`
`downloads (i. e., distributions of content), which is ‘also inconsistent with the concept of
`
`private storage.
`
`9.
`
`In addition to displaying online advertisements, the download pages on
`
`Megauploadcom are designed to increase premium subscriptions. All non-premium users are
`
`encouraged to buy a premium subscription to decrease wait and download times, which can be at
`
`' Even then, all users are warned in Megaupload.com’s “Frequently Asked Questions” and
`Terms of Service that they should not keep the solecopy of any file on Megauploadcom and that
`users bear all risk of data loss. The Mega Conspiracy’s duty to retain any data for even a
`premium user explicitly ends when either the premium subscription runs out or Megauploadcom
`decides, at its sole discretion and without any required notice, to stop operating.
`
`5
`
`

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`least an hour for popular content (and, for some periods of time, these users have been ineligible
`
`to download files over a-certain size). As a result, non-premium users are repeatedly asked by
`
`the Conspiracy to pay for more and faster access to content on Megauploadcom. Users are also
`
`prompted to view videos uploaded to Megauploadcom directly on a proprietary player designed
`
`by the Conspiracy-and offered through the Megavideo.com website and service. Users have also
`
`been asked if they want to generate a new link to the downloading file and import it to their own
`
`Megauploadcom accounts, which facilitates distribution that is again inconsistent with
`
`private storage.
`
`10.
`
`The content available from Megauploadcom is not searchable on the website,
`
`which allows the Mega Conspiracy to conceal the scope of its infiingement. Instead of hosting a
`
`search fimction on its own site, the Mega Conspiracy business model purposefully relies on
`
`thousands of third party “linking” sites, which contain user—generated postings of links created
`
`by Megauploadcom (as well as those created by other Mega Sites, including Megavideo.com
`
`and Mega1_3_orn.com). While the Conspiracy may not operate these third party sites, the Mega
`
`Conspiracy did provide financial incentives for premium users to post links on linking sites
`
`through the “Uploader Rewards” program, which ensured widespread distribution of
`Megauploadcom links throughout the Internet and an inventory ofpopular content on the Mega
`
`Conspiracy’s computer servers. These linking sites, which are usually well organized and easy
`
`to use, promote and direct users to Mega Conspiracy download pages that allow the reproduction
`
`and distribution of infringing copies of copyrighted works.
`
`1 1.
`
`Popular linking sites that contained Mega Conspiracy-generated links include:
`
`
`ninjavideo.net, rnegauploadnet, megareleasenet, kino.to alluc.org, peliculasyonkiscorn,
`
`
`seriesyonkiscom, surfihecha.nnel.com taringa.net, thepiratecityorg, and mulinks.com. While
`
`

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`several of these websites exclusively offer Megauploadcom links, all maintained an index of
`
`URL links to identified copies of copyrighted content that were stored on servers directly
`
`controlled by the Mega Conspiracy.
`
`12.
`
`The Mega Conspiracy closely monitors the traffic from linking sites to the Mega
`
`Sites and services. The Conspiracy is aware that linking sites generate a very high percentage of
`
`the millions of visits to its websites and services each week and provide the Conspiracy direct
`
`financial benefits through advertising revenue and opportunities for new premium subscriptions.
`
`13.
`
`Members of the Mega Conspiracy have knowingly interacted with users of
`
`linking sites and visited the sites (and associated online forums) themselves. Specifically, some
`
`of the defendants have instructed individual users how to locate links to infringing content on the
`
`Mega Sites (including recommending specific linking websites). Several of the defendants have
`
`also shared with each other comments from Mega Site users demonstrating that they have used
`
`or are attempting to use the Mega Sites to get infringing copies of copyrighted content.
`
`14.
`
`In contrast to the public who is required to significantly rely on third party
`
`indexes, members of the Conspiracy have fiall access to the listings of actual files that are stored
`
`on their servers (as well as the Megaupload.com- and Megavideo.com- and Megapom.com-
`
`generated links to those files). Conspirators have searched the internal database for their '
`associates and themselves so that they may directly access copyright-infringing content on
`
`I all
`
`servers leased by the Mega Conspiracy.
`
`...-u-.
`
`an...-
`
`15.
`
`Though the public-facing Megauploadcom website itself does not allow searches,
`
`it does list its “Top 100 files”, which includes motion picture trailers and software trials that are
`
`freely available on the Internet. The Top 100 list, however, does not actually portray the most
`
`

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`popular downloads on , which makes the website appear more legitimate and
`
`hides the popular copyright-infiinging content that drives its revenue.
`
`16.
`
`If a user uploads a video file to Megaupload.com, the user can utilize the provided
`
`URL link to redirect others to another Mega Conspiracy-controlled website, Megavideo.com,
`
`where they can view the file using a “Flash” video player. 'Altematively, a user who hosts a
`
`personal or commercial website can embed the Megavideo.com player into their own website to
`display the video file (and provide advertising content from the Mega Conspiracy).
`C
`
`Megavideo.com has been estimated to be as popular as the 52nd most fiequently visited website
`
`on the entire Internet.
`
`17..
`
`A non-premium user is limited to watching 72 minutes of any given video on
`
`Megavideo.com' at a time, which, since nearly all commercial motion pictures exceed that length,
`
`provides a significant incentive for users who are seeking infringing copies of motion pictures to
`
`pay the Mega Conspiracy a fee for premium access. Some premium users are, therefore, paying
`
`the Mega Conspiracy directly for access to infringing copiesof copyrighted works.
`
`18.
`
`Before any video can be viewed on Megavideo.com, the user must view an
`
`advertisement. Originally, the Mega Conspiracy had contracted with companies such as
`
`adBrite, Inc., Google AdSense, and PartyGarning plc for advertising. Currently, the
`
`Conspiracy’s own advertising website, Megaclick.com, is used to set up advertising
`
`campaigns on all the Mega Sites. The high traffic volume on the Conspiracy websites allows
`
`the Conspiracy to charge advertisers up-front and at a higher rate than would be achieved by
`
`the percentage-per-click methodology used by other popular Internet advertising companies.
`
`The popularity of the infringing content on the Mega Sites has generated more than $25 million
`
`in online advertising revenues for the Conspiracy.
`
`

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`19.
`
`Like Megaupload.com, Megavideo.com conceals many of the infringing copies of
`
`popular copyrighted videos that are available on and distributed by the site and the associated
`
`service. Megavideocom does purport to provide both browse and search functions, but any
`
`user’s search on Megavideo.com for a full length copyrighted video (which can be downloaded
`
`from a Mega Conspiracy-controlled server somewhere in the world) will not produce any results.
`
`Similarly, browsing the front page of Megavideo.com does not show any obviously infringing
`
`copies of any copyrighted works; instead, the page contains videos of news stories, user-
`
`generated videos, and general Internet videos in a manner substantially similar to Youtube.com.2
`
`Browsing the most-viewed videos in the Entertainment category on Megavideo.com,
`
`however, has at times revealed a number of infringing copies of copyrighted works that are
`
`available from Mega Conspiracy-controlled servers and are amongst the most viewed materials
`
`being offered.
`
`20.
`
`Members of the Conspiracy have publicly stated that they operate the Mega Sites
`
`in compliance with the notice and takedown provisions of the Digital Millennium Copyright
`
`Act (“DMCA”), codified at Title 17, United States Code, Section 512, despite the fact that they
`
`are violating its provisions. Internet providers gain a safe harbor under the DMCA from civil
`
`copyright infringement suits in the United States if they meet certain criteria. The members of
`
`Mega Conspiracy do not meet these criteria3 because they are willfully infiinging copyrights
`
`themselves on these systems; have actual knowledge that the materials on their systems are
`
`2 Members of the Mega Conspiracy purposefully copied content directly from Youtube.com in
`order to populate Megavideo.com’s content servers.
`
`3 Furthermore, the safe harbor requires that an eligible provider have an agent designated with
`the U.S. Copyright Office to receive infringement notices; despite having millions of users in the
`United States since at least the beginning of the Conspiracy, the Conspiracy did not designate
`such an agent until October 15, 2009, years after Megaupload.com and many of its associated
`sites had been operating and the DMCA had gone into effect.
`
`9
`
`

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`infringing (or alternatively know facts or circumstances that would make infiinging material
`
`apparent); receive a financial benefit directly attributable to copyright-infringing activity where
`
`the provider can control that activity; and have not removed, or disabled access to, known
`
`copyright infringing material from servers they control.
`
`21.
`
`Members of the Mega Conspiracy negotiated the use of an “Abuse Tool” with
`
`some major U.S. copyright holders to purportedly remove copyright-infringing material from
`
`Mega Conspiracy-controlled servers. The Abuse Tool allowed copyright holders to enter
`
`specific URL links to copyright infringing content of which they were aware, and they were
`
`told by the Conspiracy that the Mega Conspiracy’s systems would then remove, or disable
`
`access to, the material from computer servers the Conspiracy controls. The Mega Conspiracy’s
`
`Abuse Tool did not actually function as a DMCA compliance tool as the copyright owners were
`
`led to believe.
`
`22.
`
`When a file is being uploaded to Megauploadcom, the Conspiracy’s automated
`
`system calculates a unique identifier for the file (called a “MD5 hash”) that is generated using a
`
`mathematical algorithm. If, after the MD5 hash calculation, the system determines that the
`
`uploading file already exists on a server controlled by the Mega Conspiracy, Megauploadcom
`
`does not reproduce a second copy of the file on that server. Instead, the system provides a new
`
`and unique URL link to the new user that is pointed to the original file already present on the
`
`server. If there is more than one URL link to a file, then any attempt by the copyright holder to
`
`tenninate access to the file using the Abuse Tool or other DMCA takedown request will fail
`
`because the additional access links will continue to be available.
`
`23.
`
`The infringing copy of the copyrighted work, therefore, remains on the
`
`Conspiracy’s systems (and accessible to at least one member of the public) as long as a single
`
`10
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`

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`link remains unknown to the copyright holder. The Conspiracy’s internal reference database
`
`tracks the links that have been generated by the system, but duplicative links to infringing
`
`materials are neither disclosed to copyright holders, nor are they automatically deleted when a
`
`copyright holder either uses the Abuse Tool or makes a standard DMCA copyright infringement
`
`takedown request. During the course ofthe Conspiracy, the Mega Conspiracy has received
`
`many millions of requests (through the Abuse Tool and otherwise) to remove infringing copies
`
`of copyrighted works and yet the Conspiracy has, at best, only deleted the particular URL of
`
`which the copyright holder complained, and purposefully left the actual infringing copy of the
`copyrighted work on theMega Conspiracy-controlled server and any other access links
`
`completely intact.
`
`24.
`
`In addition to copyrighted files, other types of illicit content have been uploaded
`
`onto the Megauploadcom servers, including child pornography and terrorism propaganda
`
`videos. Members of the Conspiracy have indicated to each other that they can automatically
`
`identify and delete such materials on all of their servers by calculating MD5 hash values of
`known child pornography or other illicit content, searching the system for these values, and
`
`eliminating them; in fact, such files with matching hash values have been deleted from the Mega
`
`Conspiracy’s servers. Members of the Mega Conspiracy have failed to implement a similar
`
`program to actually delete or terminate access to copyright infringing content.
`
`25.
`
`On or about June 24, 2010, members of the Mega Conspiracy were informed,
`
`pursuant to a criminal search warrant from the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of
`
`Virginia, that thirty-nine infringing copies of copyrighted motion pictures were present on their
`
`leased servers at Carpathia Hosting, a hosting company headquartered in the Eastern District of
`
`Virginia. A member of the Mega Conspiracy informed several of his co—conspirators at that time
`
`11
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`

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`that he located the named files using internal searches of their systems. As of November 18,
`2011, more than a year later,ythirty-six ofthe thirty-nine infringing motion pictures were still
`
`being stored on the servers controlled by the Mega Conspiracy.
`
`26.
`
`At all times relevant to this Indictment, the defendants and other members of the
`
`Mega Conspiracy knew that they did not have license, permission, authorization, or other
`
`authority from owners of hundreds of thousands of copyrighted works to reproduce and
`
`distribute those works, including making them available over the Internet. Members of the Mega
`
`Conspiracy are aware of the way that their sites are actually used by others; have themselves
`
`used the systems to upload, as well as reproduce and distribute, infringing copies of copyrighted
`content; and are aware that they have financially benefitted directly from the infringement of
`
`copyrighted works that they are in a position to control.
`
`27.
`
`In addition to Megauploadcom, Megavideo.com, and Megaclick.com, the other
`
`websites created and domains owned by the Mega Conspiracy include: Megawor1d.com;
`
`Megalive.com; Megapix.com; Megacar.com; Megafimdcom; Megakey.com; Megaking.com;
`
`Megahelp.com; Megagogocom; Megamoviecom; Megaporn.com; Megabackupcom;
`
`Megapaycom; Megabox.com; and Megabestcom. Several of these additional sites have also
`
`hosted infringing copies of copyrighted works. The websites and services, as well as the
`
`domains themselves, have been facilitated and promoted by illicit proceeds from the operations
`
`of Megauploadcom, Megavideo.com, and Megaclick.com.
`
`28.
`
`' In addition to MEGAUPLOAD LIMITED, VESTOR LIMITED, Megamedia
`
`Limited, Megavideo Limited, Megarotic Limited, Megapix Limited, Kingdom International
`
`Ventures Limited, Netplus International Limited LLC, Basemax International Limited, and
`
`Mindpoint International Limited LLC, the following companies and entities have facilitated and
`
`12
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`

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`promoted the Mega Conspiracy’s operations: Kimvestor Limited; Trendax Limited; Monkey
`
`Limited; Kimpire Limited; A Limited; N1 Limited; RNK Media Company; Megapay Limited;
`
`Megamusic Limited; Finn Batato Kommunikation; Mega Services Europe Ltd.; Megateam
`
`Limited; Megastuff Limited; Megacard Inc.; Megasite Inc.; Seventures Limited; SECtravel; and
`
`Bramos B.V. In addition, the creation and operation of these companies and entities has been
`
`facilitated and promotedlby illicit proceeds from the operations of the Mega Conspiracy.
`
`THE DEFENDANTS
`
`29.
`
`KIM DOTCOM, who has also been known as KIM SCHMITZ and KIM TIM
`
`JIM VESTOR, is a resident of both Hong Kong and New Zealand, and a dual citizen of Finland
`
`and Germany. DOTCOM is the founder of MEGAUPLOAD LIMITED (“MUL”) and
`
`Megamedia Limited (“MMG”). Until on or about August 14, 2011, DOTCOM was the Chief
`
`Executive Officer for MUL, and he is currently MUL’s Chief Innovation Officer. As the head of
`
`the Mega Conspiracy, DOTCOM employs more than 30 people residing in approximately nine
`
`countries. From the onset of the Mega Conspiracy through to the present, DOTCOM has
`
`supervised the development of the websites and companies utilized in the Mega Conspiracy.
`
`DOTCOM directed the creation of the network infrastructure behind the Mega Conspiracy
`
`websites, negotiated contracts with Internet Service Providers and advertisers, administered the
`
`domain names used by the Mega Conspiracy, and exercises ultimate control over all decisions in
`
`the Mega Conspiracy. DOTCOM has arranged millions of dollars in payments for the computer
`
`servers utilized by the MUL and MMG properties around the world, and has also distributed
`
`proceeds of the Conspiracy to his co-conspirators. DOTCOM-is the director and sole
`
`shareholder of both VESTOR LIMITED and Kingdom International Ventures Limited, which
`
`have been used to hold his ownership interests in MUL- and MMG- related properties; for
`
`13
`
`

`
`Case 1:12-cr-00003-LO Document 1 Filed 01/05/12 Page 14 of 72 PageID# 14
`Case 1:12—cr—00003—LO Document 1 Filed 01/05/12 Page 14 of 72 Page|D# 14
`
`example, DOTCOM owns approximately 68% of Megauploadcom, Megaclick.com, and
`
`Megapixcom, and 100% of the registered companies behind Megavideo.com, Megapomcom,
`
`and Megapaycom, through VESTOR LIMITED. DOTCOM has personally distributed a link to
`
`a copy of a copyrighted work on, and has received at least one infringing copy of a copyrighted
`
`work from, the Mega Sites. Additionally, on numerous instances, DOTCOM received DMCA
`
`copyright infringement takedown notices from third-party companies. In calendar year 2010
`alone, DOTCOM received more than $42 million from the Mega Conspiracy.
`
`30.
`
`MEGAUPLOAD LIMITED is the registered owner of Megauploadeom, the
`
`primary website operated by the Mega Conspiracy, and Megac1ick.com, a site that offers
`
`advertising associated with Mega Conspiracy properties. MUL is a registered company in Hong
`
`Kong with a registry number of 0835149. MUL has a number of bank accounts in Hong Kong
`
`that have been used to facilitate the operations of the Mega Conspiracy. DOTCOM, in_ addition
`
`to holding the title of Chief Executive Ofiicer of MUL until as recently as August 2011, owns,
`
`through VESTOR LIMITED, approximately 68% of the shares of MUL; MATHIAS
`
`ORTMANN, through Netplus International Limited LLC, owns an additional 25%; JULIUS
`
`CEENCKO, through Basemax International Limited, owns 2.5%; BRAM VAN DER KOLK
`
`utilizes Mindpoint International Limited LLC to hold 2.5% of the shares of MUL;
`
`SVEN ECHTERNACH owns approximately 1%; and the remaining 1% is owned by an investor
`
`in Hong Kong.
`
`31.
`
`VESTOR LIMITED is a registered company in Hong Kong with a registry
`
`number of 0994358. VESTOR LIMITED has a DBS Bank account in Hong Kong that has been
`
`used to facilitate the operations of the Mega Conspiracy. DOTCOM (under the alias KIM TIM
`
`JIM VESTOR) is the sole director and shareholder of VESTOR LIMITED, and thus is
`
`

`
`Case 1:12-cr-00003-LO Document 1 Filed 01/05/12 Page 15 of 72 PageID# 15
`Case 1:12—cr—OOOO3—LO Document 1 Filed 01/05/12 Page 15 of 72 Page|D# 15
`
`effectively the sole director and 68% owner of MUL, Megauploadcom, Megaclick.com, and
`Megapix.com. DOTCOM is the sole director of, and VI-ESTOR LIMITED is the sole
`
`shareholder of, MMG, which is the parent company and sole shareholder of the following
`
`companies: Megavideo Limited (which is the registered owner of Megavideo.com),
`
`Megarotic Limited (which is the registered owner of Megapomcom), and Megapay Limited.
`
`VESTOR LIMITED is also the sole owner of Megaworld.com.
`
`32.
`
`FINN BATATO is both a citizen and resident of Gennany. BATATO is the
`
`Chief Marketing and Sales Officer for Megaupload.com and other Mega Conspiracy properties.
`
`Specifically, BATATO is in charge of selling advertising space, primarily through
`
`Megaclick.com. BATATO supervises a team of approximately ten sales people around the
`
`world. The purpose of the sales team is to increase the advertising revenue in localized markets
`
`by targeting certain advertisements in certain countries. BATATO handles advertising
`
`customers on the Megac1ick.com website and approves advertising campaigns for
`
`Megaupload.com, Megavideo.com, and Megapomcom. BATATO has personally distributed a
`
`link to at least one infringing copy of a copyrighted work to a Mega Site. Additionally, on
`
`numerous instances, BATATO received DMCA copyright infringement takedown notices from
`
`third-party companies. In calendar year 2010, BATATO received more than $400,000 from the
`
`Mega Conspiracy.
`
`33.
`
`JULIUS BENCKO is both a citizen and resident of Slovakia. BENCKO is the
`
`Graphic Director for MUL and MMG. BENCKO, as the director and sole shareholder of
`
`Basemax International Limited, is effectively a 2.5% shareholder of MUL. From the onset of the
`
`Conspiracy through to the present, BENCKO has been the lead graphic designer of the
`
`Megauploadcom and other Mega Conspiracy websites. He has designed the Megauploadcom
`
`

`
`Case 1:12-cr-00003-LO Document 1 Filed 01/05/12 Page 16 of 72 PageID# 16
`Case 1:12—cr—00003—LO Document 1 Filed 01/05/12 Page 16 of 72 Page|D# 16
`
`logos, the layouts of advertisement space, and the integration of the Flash video player.
`
`BENCKO has requested and received at least one infringing copy of a copyrighted work as part
`
`of the Mega Conspiracy. In calendar year 2010, BENCKO received more than $1 million from
`
`the Mega Conspiracy.
`
`34.
`
`SVEN ECHTERNACH is both a citizen and resident of Germany.
`
`ECHTERNACH is the Head of Business Development for MMG and MUL. ECHTERNACH is
`
`a 1% shareholder in MUL. ECHTERNACH leads the Mega Team company, registered in the
`
`Philippines, which is tasked with removing illegal or abusive content from the Mega Conspiracy
`
`websites, reviewing advertising campaigns for inappropriate content, and responding to
`
`customer support e-mails. Additionally, ECHTERNACH handles the Mega Conspiracy’s
`
`relationships with electronic payment processors, accounting firms, and law firms. His activities
`
`include traveling and approaching companies for new business ventures andservices.
`Additionally, on numerous instances, ECHTERNACH received DMCA copyright infringement
`
`takedown notices from third-party companies. In calendar year 2010, ECHTERNACH received
`
`more than $500,000 from the Mega Conspiracy.
`
`35.
`
`MATHIAS ORTMANN is a citizen of Germany and a resident of both Germany
`
`and Hong Kong. ORTMANN is the Chief Technical Officer, co-founder, and a director of
`
`‘H
`
`MUL. ORTMANN, as the director and sole shareholder of Netplus Inte

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