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Cryo Chamber

More trouble for Kazaa

Kazaa raids get green light

Simon Hayes

March 4, 2004

THE Australian Federal Court has dealt a blow to file-sharing network Kazaa, allowing music industry lawyers and investigators access to material seized in raids on the company’s headquarters.

Justice Wilcox has dismissed an application by Kazaa owner Sharman Networks to have the civil search orders that permitted the February 6 raids stayed, ruling major record companies should be allowed to examine documents and computer files taken in raids on Sharman’s offices and the homes of several executives of the company.

Counsel for Sharman – which operates a network that allows users to swap music and video files online – had applied to have the orders stayed on the grounds much of the evidence had already been provided for a similar case in the US, and that music industry lawyers had not disclosed the details of those proceedings.

In his ruling, Justice Wilcox said the the non-disclosure was “not material”. He added the search orders were necessary for the music industry to obtain ‘snapshots’ of the Kazaa system in operation.

“It is obviously an essential part of the applicants’ case to put evidence before the court about the dynamic operation of the Kazaa system,” he said.

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