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Crime Piracy United States

Share Links, Become Extradited To the US 244

Posted by Soulskill
from the idle-mice-are-the-devil's-playthings dept.
castrox writes with an in-depth followup to a story we discussed in June: "Sharing links online, particularly links to copyrighted material, may render you extradited to the United States of America. 'In May, American law enforcement officials opened up yet another front in this war by seeking the extradition of Richard O'Dwyer. The 23-year-old British college student is currently working on his BS in interactive media and animation. Until last year, he ran a "link site" that helped users find free movies and TV shows, many of them infringing. American officials want to try him on charges of criminal copyright infringement and conspiracy.' The case is unique because the site, which the accused Englishman ran, was not located in the US in any way. Does this set a new precedent of things to come? The agency responsible for the extradition request is Immigrations and Customs Enforcement."
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Share Links, Become Extradited To the US

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  • by grub (11606) <slashdot@grub.net> on Friday July 22, 2011 @10:56AM (#36846034) Homepage Journal

    If they ever demand extradition for sharing goatse links, I'd be on death row.
  • Tax dollars (Score:5, Insightful)

    by cjcela (1539859) on Friday July 22, 2011 @11:00AM (#36846084)
    More tax dollars tossed to the trash to protect the interests of a few companies. And the guy was not even posting infringing content. This is getting so out of hand. Way to go, America!
    • Re:Tax dollars (Score:5, Insightful)

      by CRCulver (715279) <crculver@christopherculver.com> on Friday July 22, 2011 @11:12AM (#36846246) Homepage

      More tax dollars tossed to the trash to protect the interests of a few companies.

      "Intellectual property" is one of the few things that the US produces these days and it employs a large amount of people in a country rife with joblessness. While the RIAA and MPAA are disgusting organizations and there's certainly outright corruption with the industry buying politicians, I wonder if some in the government are pushing for these stringent measures because they think it will save the country.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Wow, a stupid country based on stupid things.

      • Re:Tax dollars (Score:4, Insightful)

        by airfoobar (1853132) on Friday July 22, 2011 @11:39AM (#36846622)

        "Intellectual property" is one of the few things that the US produces these days and it employs a large amount of people in a country rife with joblessness.

        That's what the lobbyists say. But, of course, it's misleading. There are all sorts of "Intellectual Property" related jobs, the vast majority of which are not affected by file-sharing. The entertainment industries affected are actually quite tiny, and even they are overstating the damage, since they keep having record profits every year!

      • by xero314 (722674)

        "Intellectual property" is one of the few things that the US produces these days and it employs a large amount of people in a country rife with joblessness.

        The United States is the world's leading manufacturer [shopfloor.org] of goods.

        United states unemployment rate is 9.2, which is lower than that of the European Union, and only 2 points above the world wide unemployement rate.

        Just thinking you might what to actually check your facts before making wild allegations.

        • by CRCulver (715279)

          The United States is the world's leading manufacturer of goods.

          That doesn't necessarily mean that manufacturing is at a point high enough to employ a significant portion of the population in an age of automation.

          United states unemployment rate is 9.2

          The official figure is widely ridiculed and it fails to take into account certain demographics. Maybe you might want to check your facts before you post?

          • United states unemployment rate is 9.2

            The official figure is widely ridiculed and it fails to take into account certain demographics. Maybe you might want to check your facts before you post?

            Fine then. Here are some unofficial figures that are less widely circulated, and which take into account other demographics: 8.7, -13.8, 156.3.

          • by xero314 (722674)

            That doesn't necessarily mean that manufacturing is at a point high enough to employ a significant portion of the population in an age of automation.

            Manufacturing in the 4th largest employment sector in the united states, employing nearly 12 million people [acinet.org]. Above that is Education, Retail and Social Services, none of which are particularly IP driven. So you can make all the statements you want, but the reality is that the US is no more IP driven than any other nation.

            The official figure is widely ridiculed and it fails to take into account certain demographics. Maybe you might want to check your facts before you post?

            Why don't you please provide a reputable reference that shows that this number is any more underestimated than the statistics of the rest of the world?

            Your original argument is false, but

      • by DarkOx (621550)

        employs a large amount of people in a country rife with joblessness

        Yes it employes large amounts of law enforcement personnel, politicians, thugs of various kinds, and attorneys. None of whom produce anything of use, but consume vast resources. Perhaps we are so rife with joblessness BECAUSE OF IP>

      • by rthille (8526)

        Further, I wonder how many Slashdotters would change their tune about this if his link farm wasn't to entertainment media, but rather to expensive software developed in the US which added significantly to our GDP & exports...

        • by fafaforza (248976)

          I would instead like to see the uproar in the US if a US citizen were to be extradited to Europe or Asia for linking to software made abroad stored on a server he had nothing to do with. Somehow, I don't think things would be as easy.

        • if his link farm wasn't to entertainment media, but rather to expensive software developed in the US

          With a few exceptions [pineight.com], expensive software is subject to competition from close substitutes distributed as free software. Entertainment is the best known exception.

        • by rthille (8526)

          I definitely am not defending the stupidity of extradition over this, and do not support the over-reaching of my US govt., but was specifically responding to the assertion that it was "tax dollars tossed to the trash to protect the interests of a few companies".

          Intelectual Property (for better or worse) is now a large part of the US economy and our exports, and we need to find a way to optimize not only our (the US) success with that, but humanities. (Yeah, I've been watching too many TED talks lately... :-

      • by Joe Snipe (224958)

        I wonder if some in the government are pushing for these stringent measures because they think it will save the country.

        No.

      • Maybe they could invest in a real economy instead. Why would other countries bother following the US's outdated and useless economic schemes at no benefit to themselves? Is there anything the US actually produces that the world couldn't live without? Sounds to me like the world is just better off leaving the US behind

      • by Xyrus (755017)

        It's unlikely that this country can halt its decline. We're at the stage where the general populace is apathetic and under educated. Also an increasingly concentrated group of people are making too much money and acquiring too much power to want to change anything and will actively fight anything that can cause any real improvements.

      • by mbone (558574)

        I wonder if some in the government are pushing for these stringent measures because they think it will save the country.

        No, its because they used to work for these industries, and they expect to go back once their stint in government is done.

        This is corruption. It may not be technically illegal, but it's still corruption, all the same.

  • by Lance Dearnis (1184983) on Friday July 22, 2011 @11:02AM (#36846108)
    First Cisco trying it from Canada, now the MPAA through Britain. An important thing to note through the article is that copyright laws exist in both countries - but that so far, it seems in Britain that link-sharing alone is not as damning as it is in the US. Mainly, it looks like TVShack was much more commercialized than Hotfile, and that's always something that results in a bigger hammer coming down the line. An important thing to note as well is the previous experience British judges have had with copyright litigation - I remember ACS Law and Crossley being torn into, as seen here (http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/news/2010/09/amounts-to-blackmail-inside-a-p2p-settlement-letter-factory.ars) Really, I don't think he's getting extradited. Britain is markedly hostile to US-style copyright infringement proceedings, and I doubt they failed to figure out where Crossley got his tactics from. Unless if they get someone to play rubber stamp and not examine the case, I'd lay my money on O'Dwyer staying right where he is.
    • by AmiMoJo (196126)

      The UK will extradite anyone on request to the US. It is then up to the unlucky individual to fight it. Unfortunately we consider the US to have a reliable and fair legal system so the granting of extradition is pretty much automatic.

      In a way it is actually easier to avoid being extradited if the crime is more serious. If you can show that the crime could carry the death penalty or you might be tortured then you can appeal against the decision. Our human rights laws prevent us from extraditing people to cou

      • by MROD (101561)
        Actually, due to a lop-sided treaty Tony Blair got through parliament after 9/11, basically the US can request the extradition of anyone without having to give evidence. The idea behind this was so that "terrorists" could be moved between the two countries without disclosing sensitive intelligence. The original treaty would have been two-way but the US legislature blocked the treaty at the US end. Unfortunately, because the treaty didn't have a clause which meant that it only came into power if both sides r
        • by vux984 (928602)

          Treaties are never truly "binding", they are merely a framework of agreements.

          A treaty is only worth anything if its valuable enough to both sides that either side will abide by the terms so as to gain the benefit.

          A treaty that wasn't even ratified by the US is worthless to the UK. They can run it through a paper shredder and send the bits to the USA and say its done. What's the US going to do? Say, "well then we're not going to hold up our end of the treaty... oh er... wait... we weren't going to do that a

      • by Pax681 (1002592)
        you do realise that there is no "UK legal system"?
        England ad Wales and subject to one legal system, nothern Ireland another and Scotland yet another again
        the English legal system is far more likely to grant extradition orders to the US, Scotland however is much less likely... however seeing as the laddie is in England ...roll the dice... the thing is though what he did does not break the law in england.Wales,Ireland or Scotland.
        just more bullshit from the IAA's... the cocks
    • I call upon all nations which have extradition treaties with the US, to start requests for extraditing high-profile US citizens for alleged internet crimes. Let's see how long until the US discovers that these kind of policies are not in their interest. At all. I asked this before, how can the US claim international jurisdiction over IP violations? As the Dutch say, arrogance and pride come usually precede a hard fall. The Roman empire all over, it's time to learn Chinese and forget that the USD ever existe

  • by AngryDeuce (2205124) on Friday July 22, 2011 @11:03AM (#36846116)
    "The more you tighten your grip, Tarkin, the more star systems will slip through your fingers."
  • jurisdiction? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by green1 (322787) on Friday July 22, 2011 @11:03AM (#36846132)

    How does this work? if he broke the law in the UK, he should be tried in the UK. Under what grounds would extradition to the US make sense? he'd have to have committed a crime in US territory, and if the site wasn't there, and he wasn't there, then the answer to this seems pretty clear...
    If you want to try him for a crime allegedly committed in the UK, try him in the UK, not the US. And if the UK laws don't allow you to try him in the UK because what he did wasn't a crime there, then too bad for you!

    • Re:jurisdiction? (Score:5, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 22, 2011 @11:18AM (#36846328)

      The article said the theory of jurisdiction is that the US is claiming jurisdiction over all top-level domains based in the us, so all .com, .net, .org, etc.

      • by nschubach (922175)

        So what happens if they get rid of the TLDs? Could they claim jurisdiction based on the registration point? I personally think it's rather silly to claim jurisdiction over a TLD, but it makes me want them to go away even more.

      • by mldi (1598123)

        The article said the theory of jurisdiction is that the US is claiming jurisdiction over all top-level domains based in the us, so all .com, .net, .org, etc.

        Then let them shut down the domain name. Last I checked, a sign made in the USA that points to the nearest pot store in Amsterdam has nothing at all to do with the pot store itself and is completely irrelevant to laws in the USA.

      • So the lesson is move all your stuff from a .com to a .uk.
      • So it was in fact their DNS server that linked to the offending materials then?
      • So, say, any Slashdotter who would post something that is illegal in US, can be extradited?

        A truly fascinating legal theory. I guess Americans should also be careful lest they find themselves extradited for hate speech, holocaust denial etc if they ever post a comment on a .co.uk domain? And watch out what you say about the Prophet on .sa - beheading is only relatively painless when it goes right!

    • Under the legal argument of "Fuck you, we're the USA!"

    • Re:jurisdiction? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by badfish99 (826052) on Friday July 22, 2011 @01:47PM (#36848500)

      Unfortunately, the previous, very pro-US, government in the UK signed a treaty that allows the US to extradite anyone from the UK, more or less on demand, with no requirement to prove that any crime has been committed.

      Of course "terrorism" was used as an excuse, but the treaty is being invoked in many cases where the person concerned seems to have committed only a trivial offence, or in some cases to have done something that was perfectly legal in the UK.

      The treaty is very controversial here in the UK: many people feel that the US is using the mere process of extradition as a form of punishment in itself. Sadly, there is a public perception here that the US legal system is vindictive and heavily biased.

    • by houghi (78078)

      How this works? They will invent something and ship him over. Unfortunately it is a one way street. Many people would LOVE to get some people trialed for allowing e.g. torture.

  • by i_want_you_to_throw_ (559379) on Friday July 22, 2011 @11:04AM (#36846136) Homepage Journal
    It all depends on who you can pay off to make a big stink. I remember the Penet remailer incident [wikipedia.org] and Scientology. It was located in Finland but because they were posting Scientology material they soon had their doors busted down. If you're in the U.S. just pay off your congressman (which is an INSANE return on investment), have him to make an issue of it. Problem solved.
  • Jury Nulification (Score:3, Insightful)

    by RingDev (879105) on Friday July 22, 2011 @11:06AM (#36846158) Homepage Journal

    Scream it from the mountain tops since it can't even be wispered of in court.

    -Rick

  • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Friday July 22, 2011 @11:06AM (#36846160) Journal
    ICE's contention is that the site's use of an address within the .net TLD, administered by Verisign and within US jurisdiction, was the grounds on which their jurisdiction was established.

    That seems an unnervingly broad criterion for establishing jurisdiction(if the the state tourism board of $PICTURESQE_TROPICAL_COUNTRY buys some ads from ClearChannel, urging people to book vacations, does ICE acquire jurisdiction over them?); but the immediate practical punchline seems to be to Stay. The. Fuck. Away. from American registrars if doing something that pisses off the feds.

    I can see that using an American registrar would leave you open to having your domain name(which, effectively, is a 'property' that exists in the US as much as it is anything else) being seized; but leaving you open to extradition seems insane.
  • by HangingChad (677530) on Friday July 22, 2011 @11:07AM (#36846182) Homepage

    Is that our government has gone completely off the rails of common sense. But, if you lived here, you'd already know that.

  • by anti-pop-frustration (814358) on Friday July 22, 2011 @11:21AM (#36846368) Journal
    Extra judiciary domain seizures, extradition of foreign citizens for crimes not committed in the US... ICE (U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement) is either corrupt or completely out of control. They must be reigned in.

    In the mean time, it's great that they have the situation at the Mexican border under control, gives them more time to be innovative in the war against piracy (keep going guys, you're so close to winning that one).
  • by spidercoz (947220) on Friday July 22, 2011 @11:23AM (#36846406) Journal
    The fact that our law enforcement agencies are turning into the Hollywood SS is abominable. These corporate whoremongers have no ethics, no decency, and no shame. Once upon a time people such as these were pilloried for their crimes against the public good. I find it appalling that not only are our own lawmakers bending over for these cunts, but those of foreign countries are as well. Make no mistake, we are witnessing the beginning of the end of true liberty as the multinational corporations siphon more and more power and influence away from the governments of the world. And the saddest part of the whole thing is the people, you know, where the power actually lies, are just lying down and taking it. Rise up, you lazy, apathetic fuckers. Our entire world is being sold out from underneath us while you all just sit there getting fat and flipping channels. Sooner or later you're going to click on something and an hour later jackbooted, for-hire thugs are going to haul you off to copyright concentration camp. Hollywood has become the National Socialist Party and they see everyone who uses the internet as a dirty Jew.
    • by green1 (322787)

      Hollywood has become the National Socialist Party and they see everyone who uses the internet as a dirty Jew.

      I think you need to look up the definition of Socialism.... If Hollywood was socialist the movies would be free for everyone.

      • Hollywood has become the National Socialist Party and they see everyone who uses the internet as a dirty Jew.

        I think you need to look up the definition of Socialism.... If Hollywood was socialist the movies would be free for everyone.

        and I think you have no idea what is the difference between Socialist and National Socialist

      • by spidercoz (947220)
        I think you need to read some fucking history, I'm not comparing ideology, I'm comparing behavior and tactics.
      • I think you need to look up the definition of Socialism.... If Hollywood was socialist the movies would be free for everyone.

        History Lesson #1:

        National Socialist Party.
        Commonly shortened to NAZI.


        Also, for what it's worth, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nazi [wikipedia.org]

        Hence, the National Socialist/Jew reference was valid.

        The more you know! (DING, RAINBOWS FOR EVERYONE)

      • by MikeRT (947531)

        I think you need to look up the definition of Socialism....

        I think you need to look up the NASDAP and No True Scotsman Fallacy. He was clearly referring to the former and you're guilty of the latter by engaging a definition of Socialism which purposefully excludes Corporatism (aka Fascism) which is a derivative of Socialism which uses a tight cooperation between private business and government to achieve collectivist goals.

      • by tepples (727027)

        Hollywood has become the National Socialist Party

        I think you need to look up the definition of Socialism

        So I guess Rudolf Jung [wikipedia.org], who suggested the name National Socialist German Workers' Party, also needed to look up the definition of socialism.

        (When you fight the Jews, you fight God, and God wins. It's the law. [wikipedia.org])

    • We can stop this. We can go on the offensive.

      Find out the names of the people behind this. Then, it may be some of them belong to or partner with organizations that actually have ethics. Complain to those organizations about their behavior. It's entirely possible the organizations have no idea there is a problem.

      And as others have said, writing to our representatives really can help.

  • It is increasingly clear that America is becoming a Police State. Freedoms for which it was once the envy of the world are now being trampled by government enforcers at the behest of corporate interests. When George W. Bush was in office, critics were able to lay these excesses at his feet, but it is now clear that the rot is deeper than that. So what do you do when the World's Policeman is on the take?
  • by drolli (522659)

    Directly besides the "do you plan to overthrow the US government" question in the visa application there will be a "did you take part in file sharing" question.

  • He wasn't just running a "link site," he was actively profiting from providing links to material - which no doubt puts him into the criminal copyright violation realm. When his site was seized, he reopened under a new name and registrar.

    Since he used a US registrar that provided a way to argue he is subject to US laws. You can disagree with that, but that looks like what has happened.

    He didn't help himself by sticking a finger in ICE's eye by reopening under a new name. Sometimes the smart thing to do is go

  • by 1800maxim (702377) on Friday July 22, 2011 @12:06PM (#36847064)
    We keep reading about how crazed the USA has become with its DMCA, now the Homeland Security taking down domains, and ICE strongarming in areas where it would seem it should have no jurisdiction or business.

    The reason is that it's very convenient for the government to have extremely powerful accusatory tactics and means of getting to and punishing people. You keep complaining, asking why RIAA/MPAA has so much power, but it's simply because it's convenient for the gov't for this seemingly private entity to exercise such power.

    Under the guise of anything, the gov't can search your homes without a warrant, can pull over and fingerprint you/iris scan you, can confiscate your electronic equipment, etc, etc... without due process.

    All these organizations and laws (DMCA, PROTECT IP) are simply a tool, a back-door way into your homes and private lives.

    Once you understand that, you'll also understand why such organizations have such tremendous power. It's one and the same - they work in a symbiotic relationship with the gov't, which is working toward complete control.
  • by bickle (101226) on Friday July 22, 2011 @12:12PM (#36847146)

    The case is unique because the site, which the accused Englishman ran, was not located in the US in any way.

    He's being accused of being an Englishman? Seems like that should be easily verifiable.

  • "Sharing links online, particularly links to copyrighted material,"

    Everything is copyrighted! Well, nearly everything. With the exception of project Gutenberg and a few other sites that mostly go out of their way to find public domain material, everything else, i.e. >99.99% of content that exists on the internet, is copyrighted. Content that is not copyrighted is a negligible level of noise, small enough to be ignored for most practical purposes.

    By extension, all links on the internet link to copyrighted

  • And the US has the taxpayer dollars to fund the court costs/jail time?

  • Fuck you!

    Yours truly,
    The rest of the World.

  • If someone in the UK can be brought to the US for violating an US law in the UK, then I suggest that all cities pass a law stating that the maximum speed limit on all public roads in their state be set at 30 MPH. That way, for instance, the city of Dallas can ticket all highway drivers in Ft. Worth for violating the law. PROFIT!!
  • They can "seek" extradition all they like... doesn't mean the UK will grant it.

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