New Zealand Prime Minister John Key apologized to Kim Dotcom on Thursday, saying the Megaupload founder was "spied on illegally" since he was a resident of New Zealand when surveillance was conducted, RT reports.
“I apologize to Mr Dotcom. I apologize to New Zealanders because every New Zealander…is entitled to be protected from the law when it comes to the GCSB [Government Communications Security Bureau], and we failed to provide that appropriate protection for him,” Key said in a statement obtained by the Russian news agency.
Key's apology comes on the heels of an official report into the GCSB's surveillance of Dotcom.
The Government Communications Security Bureau is authorized only to spy on foreigners. However, a report released Thursday by Prime Minister John Key found the agency spied on the German-born Dotcom after he'd gained New Zealand residency in 2010.
The New Zealand agency was assisting U.S. authorities who are trying to extradite Dotcom. U.S. authorities accuse Dotcom of racketeering and money laundering by facilitating massive copyright piracy on his file-sharing website.
Key said Thursday he's "very disappointed" the agency failed to understand its legal obligations.
In response to Key's apology, Dotcom tweeted Thursday:
As Dotcom's trial continues to sit in the court, Megaupload is said to be set to relaunch its service. According to The Huffington Post, a new iteration of Megaupload and a new music platform called Megabox may soon be launched.
Headlines from Britain to Malaysia, France to China, Germany to Brazil, Australia to the US. An apology can go a long way @johnkeypm
— Kim Dotcom (@KimDotcom) September 27, 2012