Poll Shows Only 9% Of UK Public Think Richard O'Dwyer Should Be Extradited

from the will-of-the-people dept

A poll conducted in the UK has found that only 9% of those surveyed agreed that student Richard O’Dwyer should be extradited to face criminal charges in the US for creating TVShack, a site that let people link to videos hosted elsewhere. So far, the government has been ignoring public cries not to allow the extradition, but this poll really seems to suggest that the public is not too keen on shipping O’Dwyer overseas.

Only 9% of the British public believe he should face trial in the US for his actions, according to the YouGov research. The largest group, 46%, said O’Dwyer should not be prosecuted at all, while 26% felt he should be tried in the UK.

At some point, something has to give. The UK Home Office can’t keep pretending that this is a minor issue that it can brush under the rug to keep the American government (and Hollywood) happy.

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Companies: tvshack

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Comments on “Poll Shows Only 9% Of UK Public Think Richard O'Dwyer Should Be Extradited”

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123 Comments
Anonymous Coward says:

How have they not extradited him already? I’m looking forward to his prosecution. Great example for all the TD’ers. Your actions can have legal consequences. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE watching you guys whine about O’Dwyer. Too funny. Tell us again about how much you love property rights, Mike. That’s a good one!

Machin Shin (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Indeed our actions do have legal consequences. You know what else has consequences? When the government goes rouge and ignores the will of the citizens!

I just love watching these groups trying to go after people like O’Dwyer. It is sad to see his life being destroyed, but it is bringing to light just how screwed up this system is. The more people who see this happening the sooner the system falls.

You can’t expect to do something that 90% of the population thinks is wrong and it not have consequences.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

Oh great and wise one, tell me exactly, what laws did O’Dwyer break?

BTW – I think that O’Dwyer just showed the TV industry a missed opportunity. Looks like there is a demand for TV shows this way.

I know, you think you are a law abiding person. Too bad you are supporting the US government making up laws to extradite this guy. That doesn’t seem so law abiding now does it?

Moral righteousness when it’s convenient is not moral at all.

Liz (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

So, a person who did nothing illegal in one country – can then be extradited to and prosecuted in another by their laws?

Holy crap! As a woman in America enjoying what’s considered legal, (going places without a male relative escort, revealing my face, hair, legs, speaking in public, driving a car…) I’m going to be stoned to death in some Middle Eastern country for breaking Sharia law!

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Re:

So, a person who did nothing illegal in one country – can then be extradited to and prosecuted in another by their laws?

Yep. Try this: Go to Canada and use a computer to hack into the Federal Reserve in the United States. Sit tight and see if anyone comes. OMG, they do come! You mean, there’s repercussions for my actions on the internet? Astounding!

I’m going to be stoned to death in some Middle Eastern country for breaking Sharia law!

The U.S. won’t extradite for that. But if you travel there, you may well be arrested and tried.

Niall (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:7 Re:

There’s also a matter of scale. You are saying that linking to possibly infringing tv streams is equivalent to remotely hacking the US Federal Reserve? That’s like saying someone throwing a stone at someone is equivalent to invading an entire country and killing hundreds of thousands of people!

There is a big difference between doing something clearly and massively illegal in most jurisdictions, and something that is legal in some but not others, is only a civil matter even then, and does no real ‘harm’. So your freedom of speech lets you slag off the islamic prophet, and post pictures of swastikas – do you really want Iran and Germany extraditing you for breaking *their* laws?

Quite aside from the obvious comment: what is there worth hacking in the Federal Reserve?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

US laws for a UK citizen? Hmm, seems morally wrong.

What UK laws? And all for links? No property, real or imaginary was used.

Sorry, I cannot go with you on this trip and stay on the high road. I know you think you are cheering for victims but, when laws have to be misapplied and no property was even used by the UK citizen, I think you are supporting a wrong.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

Yeah, purposefully posting links and encouraging others to do so that you know are going to be used to violate other people rights and break the law, that’s not illegal. Not. It’s is illegal. Amazing! It’s almost like what we do on the internet can have consequences. So weird.

Richard (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:6 Re:

According to the treaty signed by both countries that would qualify as a no-no-extradition in that case since no crime was committed that is considered a crime in both countries.

You are correct – and you put your finger on the error that Theresa May and the UK courts have made here.
There are laws in the UK and the US that have similar names – but they do not say the same things. If they did then O’Dwyer could be prosecuted in the UK – since his actions took place here.

Karl (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

What laws? IIRC, 17 U.S.C. 506 and 18 U.S.C. 2

You know the really frightening thing about all of this?

It’s likely that O’Dwyer didn’t break any of these laws, either.

Providing a link to infringing content is not, itself, an infringement of copyright. This has been held to be true in numerous cases.

So, O’Dwyer is not a direct infringer. He would thus have to be “aiding and abetting” the direct infringement – which is a much higher standard than contributory or vicarious infringement in civil cases. There is no evidence whatsoever that O’Dwyer actually had any contact whatsoever with the people that uploaded the infringing content, so an “aiding and abetting” charge would likely fail.

Furthermore, the direct infringement that O’Dwyer would have to be “aiding and abetting” would, itself, have to be criminal infringement. That is, the direct infringement must have been willful, and it must have been for profit (or other “private commercial gain”). There is no evidence of this, either.

So, not only is O’Dwyer being extradited for something that’s legal in the U.K., he’s being extradited for something that isn’t criminal in the U.S., either.

MrWilson says:

Re: Re:

We already knew that people who are completely innocent can be tried and convicted on trumped up charges brought at the request of corrupting powerful people. Those are the “legal consequences” you’re referring to, right?

Let me guess. You cheered for Socrates to drink the hemlock and for Barabbus to be set free also.

MrWilson says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

Who’s whining now? Oh my, poor little wealthy, corrupting corporations have their feelings and copyright violated. Nobody will hand them totalitarian control of the world to make sure that nobody listens to the music or movies that their artist/slaves create to enrich the corporations. They might have to actually start giving their customers what they want instead of using a century old business model and the corruption of the judicial process to persecute people who choose to participate in their own culture in a way the corporations don’t approve of.

Violated (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

Innocent until proven guilty?

You may have missed that other sites similar to TVShack were found to be innocent in recent years. Richard O’Dwyer cannot be lawfully extradited to the USA if he has committed no crime here.

How is wanting a UK trial to prove if he has broke the law or not “cheering on a criminal”?

Gwiz (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

I sympathize with the victims.

I sympathize with all the innocent bystanders who have had their files taken from them without due process or recourse.

You cheer on the criminal.

Umm, what criminal? All I see is someone who has been accused of a crime. I’ll reserve my judgement for after a fair trial. Apparently you’ve appointed yourself judge, jury and executioner and have already convicted him. Funny that.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

Sorry, but due process guarantees the victims–the rightholders whose rights O’Dwyer violated (allegedly)–that the violation of their rights will be punished. Just because you disagree with the soundness of the law, you have no right intentionally violate it while violating the property rights of others in the process. Give me a break.

Gwiz (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Re:

Sorry, but due process guarantees the victims–the rightholders whose rights O’Dwyer violated (allegedly)–that the violation of their rights will be punished.

The point you are missing is that O’Dwyer’s site didn’t violate any ones legal rights at all.

A UK citizen, a UK site, targeted at UK citizens and doing something found to be legal under UK law. You kind of need a crime in order to have a victim of a crime.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Re:

You don’t appear to have the facts. One can violate U.S. law while one is physically located in the U.K. That’s what he did. You’d think when the feds seized his first domain name, he would have maybe though, “Gees. Maybe I should stop committing crimes.” But nope, he kept right back at it, thumbing his nose at Uncle Sam. Bet he regrets being a punk now.

Gwiz (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:6 Re:

One can violate U.S. law while one is physically located in the U.K.

And you can violate the laws of Iran while physically in the US, so what? That doesn’t mean you should be sent to Iran to face their court system, does it?

I get the feeling I am arguing with Average_Joe here. If you can’t grasp the overall wrongness of this case because you are hung up on the letter of the law, then I am done arguing with you because it’s pointless.

Given that 90% of the UK citizens and probably the same ratio of people worldwide are against this extradition, I certainly hope the US government is garnering enough favors from Hollywood to offset the beating our country’s image is taking from this. Makes us look like petty thugs really.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:7 Re:

This has been explained to you so many times that you must be not understanding it on purpose. Yes, he is liable in the U.S. for breaking U.S. law while not in the U.S. What makes us look like thugs is not prosecuting little punk shits like O’Dwyer. Finally, you piratical douches are getting your comeuppance. Smells like victory. And watching all the little Techdirt cockroaches squirming at this story is just music to my ears.

MrWilson says:

Re: Re: Re:8 Re:

Once again, your vitriol and ignorant bias comes out. Anyone who comments on Techdirt who doesn’t sing the praises of intellectual property and the entertainment companies must clearly be a pirate freetard.

Anyone who points out the injustice and absurdity of judging citizens of one country by the laws of another doesn’t actually care about justice, just illegal downloads. Right?

For yet another time, oh wise and mystical AC, tell us why we shouldn’t extradite you to every country the laws of which you have broken?

Richard (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:8 Re:

Yes, he is liable in the U.S. for breaking U.S. law while not in the U.S.

No that is incorrect and shows that your thinking is sloppy.

You can be extradited to the US for remotely causing events in the US that break US law, provided that those events would also be illegal in the country where you are. An example would be remotely hacking into a bank computer in the US and stealing some money.

However if all your actions and all the direct effects of those actions are outside the US then you cannot be extradited. So if you hacked into the UK computer of a US bank then UK law would apply so you cannot be extradited – although you should expect a UK prosecution.

The O’Dwyer extradition fails on this because:

1) His actions are not illegal in the UK.

2) There are no direct effects in the US.

JMT says:

Re: Re: Re:6 Re:

“One can violate U.S. law while one is physically located in the U.K. That’s what he did.”

Funny how you repeatedly state that you can violate US law even if you’re located elsewhere, and yet not once have you responded to the obvious parallel of all the laws of countries like Iran, China, Saudi Arabia, etc that you break all the time. Don’t you think you should be punished for breaking those laws? Can you explain why this is different?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:8 Re:

You are really an idiot. You think that someone should be extradited to the U.S. because he broke a U.S. law abroad and so, by extension, you think that you should be extradited to Iran because you broke an Iranian law in the U.S. I can’t tell if your post is satire or serious but if you are serious you are truly deluded.

JMT says:

Re: Re: Re:8 Re:

“The tricky part is to get me extradited there.”

Exactly. As you say, it would be very hard to extradite you to another country for breaking their laws if your actions did not break the laws in your country. Just like it should be very hard to extradite Dwyer to the US for breaking US laws if his actions did not break the laws in the UK. But it’s turned out to be very easy, and that’s disgusting. No gotcha, just plain common sense.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Re:

Something seems to be missing in that under the terms of the US/UK Extradition Treaty extradition may be ordered if:

ARTICLE 2

Extraditable Offenses

1. An offense shall be an extraditable offense if the conduct on which the offense is based is punishable under the laws in both States by deprivation of liberty for a period of one year or more or by a more severe penalty.

Be my reading, if an offense does not meet the criteria above, then extradition is not available. Hence, it is not at all clear why people are saying that what this person has done has been held “legal” in the UK.

Richard (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:6 Re:

Hence, it is not at all clear why people are saying that what this person has done has been held “legal” in the UK.

The point is that no prosecution has been attempted in the UK. Hence it seems that (at best) the prosecutors are forum shopping in order to get a longer sentence ot to increase the probability of conviction.

Surely it is a misreading of the intent – if not of the letter – of extradition law to allow this.

Clearly the purpose of extradition law is to enable prosecution of offenders who have committed an offence in one country but have fled to another, not to allow prosecutors to pick and choose a legal code under which to bring charges.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Re:

IP law should never be designed to protect ‘victims of infringement’. IP law should not exist to protect the ‘rights’ of ‘rightsholders’ from being violated. These laws should not exist to ensure that those who violate the ‘rights’ of a privilege holder are punished because they did something wrong. They did nothing wrong. No one is ever entitled to an IP privilege and these laws should only exist to serve the public interest. To call someone a victim for being denied something they aren’t entitled to is like calling me a victim for being denied a trillion dollars by the government. and Congress is not obligated to grant IP privileges and so no one is entitled to them.

It is the public’s every right to freely copy as they please and we are only nice enough to forgo this right as a means of serving the public interest. That you are making these laws about something else, about ensuring the ‘rights’ of privilege holders, other than the public interest, is more reason to abolish them. That these laws are designed to protect the ‘victim rightsholders’ is more reason to abolish them. Abolish these laws.

and your view of due process is completely backwards. Due process does not guarantee that plaintiffs are compensated for those who wrong them. Due process does not guarantee that if my house gets robbed the criminal will pay me back (or that the criminal will even be caught). Due process does not guarantee that if someone breaks the law they will be punished. No, due process is supposed to guarantee that (criminal and civil) plaintiffs do not wrongfully punish innocent people. Your view of the world is so entirely backwards its incredible. Even a good parody can’t compete with how ridiculous you sound.

“Just because you disagree with the soundness of the law, you have no right intentionally violate it while violating the property rights of others in the process.”

A: Who says I intentionally violate it?

B: Who the heck are you to tell me what I do and don’t have a right to do? Nobody. Your right to impose your arbitrary moral standards on me and to tell me what I can and can’t do and what I do and don’t have a right to do is no greater than my right to do the same to you. Follow your own moral standards by yourself, don’t impose them on me.

Our government should represent the public and, dang it, I want a government that does in fact represent the public and not just corporate interests. and, as a member of those whom government is supposed to represent, I want IP laws abolished. I will continue to communicate this and if enough others agree then these laws should go. You have no right to tell us otherwise. Abolish IP!!!!!

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Re:

So your theory is that it’s OK to violate people’s rights ’cause you don’t think they should have those rights in the first place? Got it. That’s the Techdirt sociopath position. Kudos. You blend right in here with the rest of the criminals. Mike’s little army of sewer-dwellers.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:6 Re:

No, my theory is that it’s not OK to violate people’s rights and those that try to tell me that I can’t freely copy as I please are violating my right. It is not your right to tell me I can’t freely copy and it is my every right for me to do so. I expect the law to reflect this.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:6 Re:

and, besides, it is my every right to freely copy, remix (or not), and redistribute anything that is broadcasted over public airwaves however and wherever I want. It is my every right to freely broadcast whatever I want over public airwaves without having the government doing anything. The government wrongfully grants a monopoly over both the content and the distribution channels. That needs to change. Abolish government established broadcasting and cableco monopolies being used for commercial purposes. and make it legal for anyone to freely copy, remix, and redistribute anything that is broadcasted. You don’t want your content copied then keep it off of public property.

JMT says:

Re: Re: Re:6 Re:

“So your theory is that it’s OK to violate people’s rights ’cause you don’t think they should have those rights in the first place?”

Not rights, just government-granted monopolies that should only exist if there’s a net benefit to the public. Don’t get confused by the misleading use of the word ‘right’ in copyright.

Gwiz (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

Ok, now that I paying attention to which article I am commenting on….

I sympathize with the victims.

Victims of what exactly? O’Dwyer provided links to material hosted elsewhere (something found to be legal in the UK multiple times).

If you are really worried about victims of infringement, why go after a third party link site and not go after the actual people reasonable for hosting the infringing material? We don’t punish gun sellers for crimes committed with guns they sold.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

The market for guns, physical items, works differently than the market for digital goods, so the comparison is not appropriate. Going after each infringer, individually, is not possible. O’Dwyer knew that he was facilitating infringement, the violation of other people’s rights. He chose to do this while profiting from it. Classic criminal. Put his own needs above the rights of others. Knowingly violated other people’s rights (allegedly!) for profit, because, I presume, it was easy! Yeah, no sympathy from me. Sorry, dude. He did wrong, and he knows it.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Re:

Sadly, this is the reality here. No laws in the UK were broken. Only links were used.

And yet, the US got their sacrifice handed to them by the UK government. As depressing the US government is, I am really glad that I am not under the whims of the UK right now. I’ll cheer when the UK government belongs to the people again.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Re:

Sadly, this is the reality here. No laws in the UK were broken. Only links were used.

And yet, the US got their sacrifice handed to them by the UK government. As depressing the US government is, I am really glad that I am not under the whims of the UK right now. I’ll cheer when the UK government belongs to the people again.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Re:

So you see him as facilitating a crime. I would like to see how you prove that the person had malicious intent. If the laws in UK is not violated, it is pretty hard for him to know since you cannot assume that he knows US, Belgium, Canadian, Japanese and so on, law intimately…

If this is how it works I am pretty surprised nobody from USA has been extradited and prosecuted for “deeplinking” in Denmark…

MrWilson says:

Re: Re: Re:8 Re:

That doesn’t actually address the issue. Why aren’t you pushing for the extradition of American citizens to other countries then? Why haven’t you submitted yourself to the US authorities to be extradited to any of the countries the laws of which you have violated? It’s only fair if you think O’Dwyer should be extradited here though he’s not broken the law in his own country. What makes the US so special in your opinion?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Re:

So what if he thought he was breaking US law. He is not a US citizen or subject. He was not in the US or intending to go to the US. The US do not own the world and have no business using treaties intended to “fight terrorism” to conduct their politically corrupt, cronyism motivated persecution of other nation’s citizens.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

O’Dwyer knew that he was facilitating infringement, the violation of other people’s rights.

Who are these victims you speak of that think a student who made a site for users to provide links should be extradite as a criminal?
Who are these victims you mention that think it is his fault when he is not liable for any content linked to?
Who are these victims you cry about that have their rights violated when someone post a link of infringing content?
Who are these victims you sympathize that could not withstand the pain and suffering deeply from a html link?
Who are these victims you defend that believe a UK citizen should have been aware of foreign laws when UK laws says what he did was legal in his country?
Who are these victims you support that think he deserves to be away from his family oversea and possibly serve in prison on foreign soil?

I’m most certain that at least 90% of the people doesn’t fit the description of your so-call victim.

He chose to do this while profiting from it. Classic criminal.

One more time.
Who are these victims that are stupid enough to think O’Dwyer is making a ‘large’ revenue out of banner ads?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

People who have respect for law do not call a person who has never been convicted of a crime a “criminal”.

Personally with your attitude, you are living in the wrong time and era. You’d be more comfortable and fit in better in a totalitarian authoritarian regime where the state decides on whim who is guilty. The Communist era Soviet Union for instance.

Why do you hate due process?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

You’re right. He’s an alleged criminal. He hasn’t been convicted. Hell, he hasn’t even been extradited. But looking at the facts that are available, it seems clear enough to me that he knew he was doing something wrong. He just thought, “They’ll never come after me!” Woops. Extradition treaty!

Violated (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

More like he did not believe he had broken any law seeing that past sites involved in linking have been found innocent under English law. That belief alone then removes the wilful aspect needed to convict.

Also they are only doing extradition now due to their glorious failures in convicting other site owners like with OiNK and FileSoup. It is not like they are going to go home and say “Well we failed that one, it is the law, so lets accept defeat”. Nope all about how they can abuse and twist the system in a new way to strike out at their enemies.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Re:

More like he did not believe he had broken any law seeing that past sites involved in linking have been found innocent under English law. That belief alone then removes the wilful aspect needed to convict.

Nope. He willfully knew that he was violating U.S. law. His mistake was in thinking that U.S. law didn’t matter. Woops. O’Dwyer, Dotcom, etc. Sorry, guys, but when you so openly and so disgustingly violate other people’s rights, sometimes, sometimes, the system gets it right and the law reaches out to the other side of the earth to get your ass. Selective prosecution? Surely. The right thing to do to show you punks that your choices have consequences? Yep. Worth every penny.

Violated (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Re:

The United Kingdom of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Island is a sovereign country with its own laws, police, government and justice system.

I am very certain that the laws of the United States does not apply here any more than the laws of China, Iran, North Korea or any Middle East country.

Your mistake is that we have an extradition treaty to trade wanted people for our mutual benefit. Overlooking the unbalanced nature of this treaty, and the Government’s failure to add a section to pick the trial location, then the United States is well know to vastly abuse the powers it has been given.

Richard O’Dwyer is no wanted murder, rapist, armed robber etc, which this treaty is ideal for, but simply a young college student who allowed other people to post HTTP links on this website.

We should also not forget that so many of those media files were put on the Internet by their own owners for official linking to a rival service. The fact that this media was unprotected allowed such links to be copied to TVShack. The rival site and media owners did not like this and instead of restricting access to their own media then all I can say is here they are attacking their rival.

Gwiz (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

…it seems clear enough to me that he knew he was doing something wrong.

Once again, bullshit. The UK courts had already determined that the kind of site that TVShack was is legal in the UK.

Not sure why you think US laws are applicable worldwide nor why citizens of other sovereign nations should abide by them.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

So what if he knew what he was doing was wrong. I saw a five year old sneakily pick their nose the other day and I am sure they knew what they were doing was wrong. For all I know there might be somewhere on earth where nose picking is illegal.

I do stuff I know is wrong often. It was wrong of me to leave the dishes until the morning the other day. I’m lucky I did not attract ants inside. It was wrong of me to take that extra slice of cake last week.

No one should be extradited to somewhere else to be tried for acts that took place in the jurisdiction they are being extradited from. If they cannot be convicted in the jurisdiction they are both currently located in and committed the acts in, then that should be the end of it.

Noah Callaway (profile) says:

Ignore the Citizens!

“The UK Home Office can’t keep pretending that this is a minor issue that it can brush under the rug to keep the American government (and Hollywood) happy.”

Unfortunately, the UK Home Office can and probably will ignore its citizens, pretend this is a minor issue, try and brush it under the rug, and extradite him anyway.

Once it’s said and done the story will die (at least, the UK extradition portion of the story).

Duke (profile) says:

Re: Ignore the Citizens!

Unfortunately, the UK Home Office can and probably will ignore its citizens…

Haven’t you heard the latest CCDP/Comms Data proposals? The Home Office wants to pay very close attention to all its citizens, and everyone else in the country, and find out precisely what they’re saying and who they’re talking to.

Unfortunately, they’re doing this to make it easier to go after people they don’t like, rather than to find out what they should be doing.

Anonymous Coward says:

‘The UK Home Office can’t keep pretending that this is a minor issue that it can brush under the rug to keep the American government (and Hollywood) happy.’

but that is exactly what they will do. the UK will do anything, particular this coalition government that is in power atm, just to keep in the US ‘good books’. look at the DEA that Vaizey has just forced into law, simply to please the US entertainment industries, fucking tosser!

Violated (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Yes they are sure to ignore this just like anything else that does not risk their job or ends up with their head on a spike.

I think the best chance we have is to sue Theresa May in Court should she unlawfully ship him off and we prove later that he has broke no law here. She would not be so willing to risk her job and butt unless she is totally certain Richard has broke English law.

Aileron says:

A civil case, not a criminal case.

The point that no one seems willing to address is why are governments (the US in particular) acting as corporate policemen? it is sick and twisted beyond belief! These are civil copyright issues that should be handled by a civil court, not a criminal court.

This dangerous blurring of the law needs to be exposed and held accountable. No theft has taken place, he simply made links, rightly or wrongly, its a civil case not a criminal one and therefore the notion of extradition is irrelevant. By the same logic the owners and shareholders of google should be prosecuted too or are they too big to be held accountable? Sue him in Britain and let him face any consequences there.

US laws are for US citizens or people residing in the US at the time of any alleged crime. End of story… its not an international terrorism case, its an alleged civil copyright abuse case. I wish our governments would stand up for their own people with the same determination that they are happy to use for mega corps and hollywood. this is sick beyond belief and abuses the notion of justice and the legal system.

Quinn Wilde says:

Why extradition is wrong.

Imprisonment is intrinsically wrong. It is unarguably a fundamental violation of human rights.

However, as a society, we accept imprisonment for a very specific set of reasons, in a very specific set of circumstances.

Very importantly, we accept imprisonment in a democratic spirit, as part of a social contract: “If I break the law, I risk imprisonment, and as a democratic citizen I accept this.”

This is only acceptable because we have the ability to change those rules and circumstances in a democratic fashion. If our government begin to imprison people in unreasonable circumstances, we petition our government to change the laws, and we can change our government.

Extradition breaks this arrangement, because we have *no democratic input* into the laws of other sovereign states. If a UK citizen doesn’t like the laws in the USA, they are entitled to their opinions, but they cannot be part of the democratic mechanism which might change those laws.

It is especially problematic where in the subject’s own democratic system they have arguably broken no laws. We have, arguably, worked hard in the UK to maintain a reasonable stance on intellectual property, and done so within a democratic framework. United States citizens have taken their own path, and to submit to that is not democratic.

None of which is about whether what the accused did, or did not do, how bad it was, how much damage they did, or even what they were accused of.

It is about how we respect our democracy, and how we apply it.

By all means, throw democracy out as well if it serves your arguments. But don’t attempt to be taken seriously following that.

Richard (profile) says:

Re: Why extradition is wrong.

Extradition breaks this arrangement, because we have *no democratic input* into the laws of other sovereign states. If a UK citizen doesn’t like the laws in the USA, they are entitled to their opinions, but they cannot be part of the democratic mechanism which might change those laws.

Actually extradition is fine if confined to its proper purpose – which is to allow fugitives from justice to be returned to the scene of their crimes for trial. A further condition must be that the crimes of which they are accused must actually be crimes in the place that they are extradited from. This last point addresses your concerns about democratic accountability. However in the present case NONE of these conditions is met.

My interpretation of Theresa May’s attitude is that she is a coward who does not dare to do anything other than to rubberstamp the actions of officals and judges.

Dave says:

This is first-rate b*llsh*t

Top-notch cattle excrement here by a government minister (Home Secretary, I do believe) who seems to have no understanding of the law she believes she is upholding. Mr. Dwyer has committed no crime in the UK and probably none in the USA either – certainly done nothing heinous there and then fled the country, in which case, extradition would probably be appropriate. I fail to see how USA law (even if it applies to publishing links, which is doubtful) can possibly be applied to a UK citizen actually living in the UK. As has been said, I and millions of others might be doing all sorts of things which might go against other countries’ laws but there is no way they can possibly prosecute. Are “they” going to extradite most of the population? This ruling makes no sense at all and we can only hope his appeal is heard by a judge who knows the law, unlike a certain Theresa May, it would seem.

Anonymous Coward says:

I look forward to the day the Corrupt Governments find their Dirty Laundry aired to the public.
O’Dwyer did nothing wrong under the Laws of his Nation and never hosted anything on his site.
It is wrong of our US Gov to pick on this young man.
If allowed to happen without speaking up against it will be a crime.Next thing up they will come for any of you and they will attack google and any other search engine that hosts no files.
US Gov your day is coming soon so beware !!!

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