Piracy extradition halted as O'Dwyer signs deal with US
28th Nov 2012 | 11:14
Jimmy Wales will be pleased
British student Richard O'Dwyer has signed a deal to avoid being extradited to stand trial for copyright infringement in the US.
O'Dwyer has been fighting to stay in the UK after he was accused of copyright infringement by setting up and profiting from TV Shack, a site hosting links to pirated films and TV shows.
Today he signed a "deferred prosecution" agreement that sees him staying on British soil and paying a fee the BBC describes as "a small sum" in compensation. O'Dwyer allegedly made around £147,000 ($230,000) from the site.
Mr O'Dwyer will travel to the US voluntarily in the next few weeks for the deal to be formally ratified, it is understood.
Another hashtag victory
The case attracted a lot of attention in the UK, with O'Dwyer becoming a posterchild for the fight against the US throwing its weight about the internet.
After UK Home Secretary Theresa May okayed the extradition order in January, Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales fought O'Dwyer's corner.
The web magnate took issue with the US trying to "prosecute a UK citizen for an alleged crime which took place on UK soil".
He launched a petition to block the extradition and added, "The internet as a whole must not tolerate censorship in response to mere allegations of copyright infringement. As citizens we must stand up for our rights online."
Fans of extradition orders have had a hard time of it lately – autistic computer hacker Gary McKinnon was also saved from prosecution in the US after his extradition was blocked on grounds of human rights.