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First the current act of NZ Parliament in this case is the Search and Surveillance Act 2012, not 2009 as you cite.
Further in the current act. 113 Powers of persons called to assist
(1) Every person called on to assist a person exercising a search power is subject to the control of the person with overall responsibility for exercising that power.
(2)..(j)copy any document, or part of a document, that the person exercising the power has determined may be lawfully copied.
In this case the FBI can not exceed the powers of the NZ Police. The NZ Court procedure was for the evidence to be held in safe custody until a court hearing was to decide if the FBI would be given any access at all. The NZ Police Officer left the FBI in an evidence room without any supervision at which point the FBI cloned the 18 hard dives and left the building and sent them to the USA via FedEX WITHOUT permission from the NZ Police. This is absolutely illegal. The NZ Police had no legal standing to override the NZ Courts decision for due process to decide if the FBI would be granted access, ergo the FBI had no legal basis for carrying out their illegal acts of copyright infringement and contempt of court on New Zealand soil.
Time for the FBI agents to be arrested for committing a crime in New Zealand. We arrested and sent French secret agents to jail for violating NZ Laws in the Rainbow Worrior bombing in the past. There as absolutely no good reason the FBI should believe they can act above the law in New Zealand and get away with it!!!!!
Search and Surveillance Bill 2009 108 (j) (i): "Every search power authorises the person exercising it to use any reasonable measures to create a forensic copy of any material in such a computer system or other data storage device."
Yeah, it might appear that the NZ Police would have been authorized to make a legal copy but that is not what happened. The FBI where left in a room with the evidence and before the NZ Police officer got back to the room they took copies and left, without telling the officer, and shipped the cloned hard drives back to the USA via FedEX.
The FBI has clearly broken the sovereign rights of New Zealand here and also failed to comply with a New Zealand court procedure that demanded that the defense would be granted a court hearing to decide if the FBI would be given any rights at all to the data. The FBI agents should be charged with an offense and NZ should demand they be extradited back to New Zealand for a court hearing to face charges of illegal copyright infringement and contempt of court.
No evidence was made unavailable to the defense.
In fact that is exactly what has happened in this case. Before the extradition hearing due in August the FBI instructed the NZ Police and Crown Law office to argue in court that the defense should not have access to any existence. The latest ruling by the judge overruled the FBI's request and said that under the New Zealand Bill of Rights the defense should have access to all the information that has to date been denied to them.
The FBI broke a court order in NZ that stipulated that a further hearing would be required to decide if the FBI where going to be given access at all. They just copied and stole the information without even the NZ Police knowing what they where doing.
If a NZ judge has said that the FBI have no right to access that information at this time, then the NZ Police and the FBI are not conducting the investigation an a manner in which it is lawfully authorized.
Crown Lawyer Mark Ruffin acting of behalf of the FBI in NZ has until Monday to report to the judge why the FBI and NZ Police have appeared to act unlawfully in allowing copies to be made and why the NZ Police have allowed the FBI to take data that was to be held in "safe custody" by the NZ Police out side the country.
The best answer Ruffin was able to give the New Zealand High Court was that a NZ/USA mutual assistance arrangement obligated the NZ Police to give the FBI the information and "The agreement states that each country gives up some of its sovereignty for the mutual benefit of all." For Christs sake if it's ok for the NZ Police to ignore laws in New Zealand because the FBI told them to what's next? How about the NZ Police just water board Mr Dotcom until he gives up the passwords to encrypted drives.
The next interesting question, can any of the information that have gained from this illegal copying of Mr Dotcom's data be used as evidence in the USA legal case? If the defense can show that the FBI have illegally obtained this information then doesn't it have to be thrown out of court?
As a New Zealander I'd like to send a message to the USA Government, "please get the fuck off my front lawn!".
As a New Zealander I say, fuck you USA, get the hell off my front lawn.