Kim Dotcom is no longer a pauper as he gains access to $50m

Kim Dotcom has partially unlocked access to a $50 million pool of cash in Hong Kong to pay for living expenses and legal bills after telling a judge he had no more money available in New Zealand, it has been reported.

A written judgment is not yet available, but South China Morning Post is reporting that the internet entrepreneur got access to $80,000 a month after telling a Hong Kong judge he was broke and needed access to money in Hong Kong seized at the request of the United States.

$80,000 a month is a mere pittance for a guy like Dotcom.  He was destitute on $100,000 a month previously.  But at least this will put him in a position where he can perhaps catch up on some of his overdue invoices before he leaves for the US.  

In New Zealand, he has been able to argue for access to millions of dollars of withheld money for living and legal expenses.

The $50 million in Hong Kong, where Mr Dotcom and Megaupload had been based, was also restrained, although a successful legal challenge a year ago opened the way for the money to be unlocked.

The Post reported that Mr Dotcom’s lawyer, Gerard McCoy, SC, told the court his client’s “hands were tied behind his back” and denying access to the money was “not allowing him to use his own money to defend the cases against him”.

Mr McCoy splits work between Hong Kong and a post as a professor at the University of Canterbury.

Aside from the money for living expenses, about $600,000 was also sought for legal expenses, although it was not reported whether it was a lump sum or monthly payments.

The application was opposed with allegations that Mr Dotcom had failed to declare all his assets. There were claims he had not declared details of his living costs, including large sums paid in electricity bills.

The court found the details were declared in New Zealand hearings.

At least this removes any concern that Dotcom can appeal on the grounds that he does not have enough money  to live on or to defend himself.   And if he wants to live well, dine well and play hard, then that’s just what you have to expect from a flamboyant Internet entrepreneur…

I hope he puts at least some of it aside for the near future.  He may want to buy a thicker mattress.



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