This week’s hearing into the January raid against Kim Dotcom’s New Zealand mansion has turned up interesting new evidence today. Under questioning from a defense lawyer, a senior police officer has admitted that top New Zealand officers and members of the FBI watched the raid live via video link. Only adding to the intrigue is the revelation that a secret government unit were present at the pre-raid meeting.
This week Kim Dotcom, police and other officials have been giving evidence in the Auckland High Court as part of a hearing to determine what happened during the January raid on his New Zealand mansion.
By now the backdrop to the story is well-known, particularly after a video recorded during the raid was published online this week.
It largely confirmed what has been reported thus far – armed anti-terrorist officers, helicopters and significant force were all used in the pursuit of individuals alleged to have been involved in copyright infringement in the United States.
It is known that U.S. authorities had “boots on the ground” in New Zealand in pursuit of Dotcom and his associates and today that assertion was further underlined.
Under questioning from defense lawyer Guyon Foley, Detective Inspector Grant Wormald of the NZ Organized and Financial Crime Agency had to reveal how senior police officers and the FBI had received their information as the raid panned out.
“What information was coming back to your headquarters group in relation to what was happening as to progress of the raid?” Mr Foley asked.
“We received phone calls from the scene in respect to the fact that at least three of the defendants apart from Mr Dotcom have been located,” Mr Wormald said, initially stumbling over his words.
“Radio contact with officers on the ground?” Foley questioned.
Wormald said that due to the raid being carried out by the Special Tactics Group they did not have direct radio contact since STG, New Zealand’s anti-terror force, use only encrypted communications.
“Any video feed from anywhere?” Foley pushed. After another pause, Wormald said that there had indeed been live video.
“We had a video feeding back to the police station,” Wormald said.
“Really?” Foley added with a surprised tone. “From where?”
“I’m not going to discuss that,” Wormald responded.
What happened next was hidden from the media but the intrigue didn’t stop there. Detective Inspector Wormald also admitted that a secret government organization had been involved in the raid on the Dotcom mansion.
Paul Davison, QC, acting on behalf of the defense, asked Wormald if the group of people at the pre-raid meeting belonged to the Security Intelligence Service. He denied that, but refused to say exactly who they were.
“They work for the government,” he said.
On Twitter, Kim Dotcom said people should expect some big news in the coming weeks.
“The truth is coming out!” he said. “And we are just getting started.”