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Megaupload successor hit by Gabon setback

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Kim Dotcom's successor to the banned Megaupload file-sharing website has been hit with a setback after Gabon blocked access to its intended domain name.

The West African country said that it was concerned the Mega service, scheduled to launch in January 2013, would be used to host copyright-infringing files.

Kim Dotcom unveils Megaupload successor - "MEGA"
Kim Dotcom Schmitz

© Rex Features / Greg Bowker/Newspix/Rex Features

Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom
















However, Dotcom said that the move was part of America's "bad faith witch hunt" against him, and claimed that he has an alternate domain for www.me.ga.

The 38-year-old is fighting extradition from his home in New Zealand to the US on charges of mass copyright infringement related to Megaupload, which he denies.

Dotcom, who prosecutors claim has earned about $175 million (£109m) through illegal means, revealed his plans to launch Mega last week, claiming that advanced encryption would make the site virtually impossible for authorities to raid.

The site's domain was to be based in Gabon, but the country's communications minister Blaise Louembe said that he has blocked it now before launch in order to "protect intellectual property rights".

Kim Dotcom unveils Megaupload successor - "MEGA"


"I have instructed my departments to immediately suspend the site www.me.ga," he said in a statement.

"Gabon cannot serve as a platform or screen for committing acts aimed at violating copyrights, nor be used by unscrupulous people."

Responding to the situation on Twitter, Dotcom suggested that Gabon had taken the decision after pressure from the US government and content owners such as Vivendi. He also claimed to have an "alternative domain".

"Don't worry. We have an alternative domain. This just demonstrates the bad faith witch hunt the US government is on," he tweeted.

In a later tweet, he added: "Gabon Minister used time machine to analyse legality of the future Mega. Verdict: Cyber crime! Gets 5$ award from the FBI."

> Kim Dotcom plans to sue US government to fund broadband project
> Kim Dotcom opposition accused of unlawful spying

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