Megaupload files motion to delay civil suit

The defunct file-sharing site, under financial pressure, wants to deal with the pending criminal case first

Megaupload filed a motion in federal court on Thursday asking to delay a civil suit filed against the file-sharing site while it prepares a defense for its criminal case.

Two companies, Microhits and Valcom, filed a civil suit against Megaupload on March 21, alleging the site induced and contributed to infringing copyright.

Microhits holds the copyrights for recordings by artists such as Billie Holiday, Marvin Gaye and Rod Stewart, while Valcom owns audio and video rights to films featuring entertainers such as Bill Murray, Jackie Chan and Ryan Seacrest.

The civil suit names Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom, the company itself; Vestor, a company owned by Dotcom; and Mathias Ortmann, Megaupload's CTO. The suit came about two months after Megaupload was shut down on Jan. 19 and charged with criminal copyright infringement, the first time a cloud storage service provider has faced such charges in the U.S.

In its motion, Megaupload said the civil suit allegations "appear to be copied verbatim" from the indictment filed in January. If the civil suit progressed in parallel with the criminal case, Megaupload's defendants may be forced to assert their Fifth Amendment right against self incrimination but then waive it as part of the civil case, the motion said.

"This would be an unfair burden on their constitutional rights," the document contends.

Further, Megaupload argued it is broke, as its assets were frozen in January. The company has been asking the U.S. government to unfreeze some funds in order to pay for the preservation of upwards of 28 petabytes of data stored on the service and needed for the legal cases.

Megaupload attorney Ira P. Rothken said on Thursday that negotiations are still ongoing with the U.S. government, but he expected talks would continue for "days" not "weeks." If negotiations fail, Judge Liam O'Grady of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia will make a decision.

The data is still being stored by Carpathia Hosting in Dulles, Virginia, which says it costs US$9,000 a day to maintain. The Electronic Frontier Foundation filed a brief with the court asserting that users who were not breaking copyright law should be able to recover their data.

Send news tips and comments to jeremy_kirk@idg.com

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jeremy Kirk

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?