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Pirate Bay founder arrested in Cambodia

Pirate Bay founder arrested in Cambodia

Published: 01 Sep 2012 14:34 GMT+02:00
Updated: 01 Sep 2012 14:34 GMT+02:00

Gottfrid Svartholm Warg, one of the founders of the file sharing website The Pirate Bay has been arrested in Cambodia after an international warrant was issued following a conviction in Sweden for copyright violations.

"I know that he has been arrested," his former defence counsel Ola Salomonsson told the Aftonbladet daily.

The Swedish foreign ministry has confirmed only that a Swedish man "in his thirties" has been arrested in Phnom Penh.

In April 2009, the Stockholm District Court convicted Svartholm Warg, along with co-founders Peter Sunde, Fredrik Neij and financier Carl Lundström, of facilitating copyright violations.

Each man was sentenced to one year in prison. They were also ordered to pay a total of 30 million kronor ($4.4 million) in damages.

All four appealed their sentences, and in November 2010 the Svea Court of Appeal uphold the convictions, with the exception of Svartholm Varg who failed to turn up at the hearing because of illness.

After failing to request his appeal be heard, the guilty verdict came into force in October 2011 and when Svartholm Warg failed to turn up for prison at the appointed time on April 18th 2012, an international warrant was put out for his arrest.

All three of Svartholm Warg's fellow Pirate Bay-founders had the jail terms of their sentences reduced from those initially handed down by the lower court, with Neij being sentenced to 10 months in prison, Sunde to eight months and Lundström to four months.

In addition, the court of appeal increased the compensation the defendants are required to pay up to 46 million kronor ($6.57 million).

The Swedish Supreme Court (Högsta Domstolen), announced in February that it would not grant the right to appeal in the case, meaning the appeal's court sentence would stand.

Fredrik Neij in May took his case to the European Court of Human Rights, claiming his conviction violates his freedom of speech.

Neij lives in Laos and according to media reports has recently sought the return of his Swedish passport in order for him to travel with his wife to Thailand for the birth of their third child.

Peter Sunde meanwhile currently lives in Germany and according to a blog post penned by him in July, he has confirmed that an application for a pardon has been rejected.

The Pirate Bay case gained broad international attention and despite repeated attempts to close it down, the popular file sharing site remains in operation.

Peter Vinthagen Simpson

Follow Peter on Twitter here.

The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

16:40 September 1, 2012 by Tiny Red Ant
Too bad. Instead of facing his punishment he decided to flee. Well this saga is not over yet.
16:59 September 1, 2012 by Abe L
They only got convicted because the US wanted it. The majority of the Swedish and I'd go as far as saying European citizens don't agree with the conviction in the first place, let alone with the outrageous punishment. It has set a terrible precedent for people operating websites with any kind of linking or indexing and I sincerely hope the European court overrules the decision and clears them of all charges in the name of freedom of free speech. Similar to the Assange case, it's disappointing to see what stance Sweden takes in these matters. (whatever the US tells them it to be, spineless cowards)
17:37 September 1, 2012 by DAVID T
Comment removed by The Local for breach of our terms.
21:23 September 1, 2012 by Peter Hogan
Comment removed by The Local for breach of our terms.
00:47 September 2, 2012 by Svensksmith
Funny that an Amish guy would be so good with computers.
02:58 September 2, 2012 by Texrusso
Poor guys made to suffer due to capitalism and Swedish government conniving with America government. Please read more: WikiLeaks cables show US embassy secretly coerced Sweden into attack on Pirate Bay: http://falkvinge.net/2011/09/05/cable-reveals-extent-of-lapdoggery-from-swedish-govt-on-copyright-monopoly/
13:59 September 2, 2012 by cogito
Texrusso,

Thanks for that link. It leads me to re-think my position on all this business.

Crossing over to the other side....
17:42 September 2, 2012 by philster61
Any wonder Assange doesn't want to come to Sweden. There's the proof that Sweden WILL extradite him to US.If they can arrest one of their own in foreign soil, imagine what they would do to Assange on their own soil....
18:40 September 2, 2012 by Nomark
philster61

Please justify your statement that there is proof that Sweden WILL (your emphasis) extradite him. The data seem not to support your rather definite and declarative statement.
19:01 September 2, 2012 by richardamullens
I think that Sweden will pay a price for its recent actions.

People may decide against purchasing items from Swedish companies, Volvo, Ericsson, Husqvarna, IKEA, Saab and others (see for example the list at *ttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_companies_of_Sweden )

I can understand Sweden's position, it has very high arms exports to the USA and is therefore vulnerable to threats from that country. The question is does the country associated with the film director Igmar Bergman wish instead to become a pariah among nations.

What goes round, comes round.
21:51 September 2, 2012 by Texrusso
The real criminals are in government walking freely.... The evil that men do must live after them... For you Tiny Red Ant, I will say get a life!!! Pirate bay co-founders Peter Sunde, Fredrik Neij are just bunch of young boys trying to innovate and do something extra ordinary. You need to challenge society in new positive ways for new emancipations. But when USA governments and top lobbies from Hollywood gets involve, then there is no real justice. The type of fine levied on these guys was just enough to destroy their lives. A suspended sentence would have been just enough to send a message. Afterall this was the very first case of it kind in Sweden which also leads to higher discussions in this area in Sweden.. Pirate bay party etc... These pirate bay guys are elements of change in Society. Anyways, Galileo was sentence to jail for telling Rome the Earth was not flat against every religious and catholics believe. History will absolve co-founders Peter Sunde, Fredrik Neij......
01:36 September 3, 2012 by philster61
Nomark. The fact that Sweden is wiling to pursue a Swedish National in a foreign country. And it isn't even Europe. Perhaps you might not see a pattern here. But those of us who can read between the lines certainly do....
04:51 September 3, 2012 by james dunn
Hail Pirate Bay, the digital middlefinger against global crimininal enterprises called governments...
07:21 September 4, 2012 by foreignadaption
We will never quit and we will never stop! We didn't teach our children to ALWAYS share, just to punishment for when the do. Sharing is a Constitutional Right, one in which I will not bend over for the stupid Music/Movie Industry.
08:09 September 4, 2012 by Nomark
philster61

I still miss the logic.

Wouldn't any country want to get a convicted criminal who absconded prior to starting a prison sentence back ?

To repeat my question, why does Sweden trying to get him back mean that they WILL (your emphasis) extradite Assange ?

Claiming that you somehow know this and the rest of us can't grasp is not the same thing as putting forward an evidence-based rational argument in which the merits of competing hypotheses are discussed. Can you do this ? Or are you simply making something up to suit your prejudice ?

Evidence, please......
17:31 September 7, 2012 by richardamullens
@philster61

First, Gottfrid Svartholm Warg is in Cambodia - it will cost Sweden a lot of money to bring him back and keep him in prison - so this is a malicious act.

Second, The USA buys a large amount of armaments from Sweden so, I think that one can reasonably conjecture that

a) Sweden is acting under duress from the USA.

b) The USA wants Julian Assange.

so it is probable that the USA will ask for him to be extradited there.
14:41 September 8, 2012 by cogito
No, #16. Obama doesn't want Assange. America isn't big enough to hold two messiahs.
01:05 September 9, 2012 by richardamullens
@cogito

Yawn, I've read that remark elsewhere - unoriginal.
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