An Ontario judge has refused a US request for unfettered access to the data on Megaupload servers hosted in Canada. The ruling is another sign that overseas courts are not giving US officials the degree of deference they've grown accustomed to in this case under US law.
Megaupload once had servers around the world, but they were shut down in a coordinated raid on January 19, 2012. In the United States, the government quickly took possession of servers Megaupload had leased from Carpathia Hosting, copied the data they wanted from the hard drives, and then returned the servers to Carpathia. Carpathia has complained it lost thousands of dollars because it was not able to re-allocate these leased servers to another client.
The government wanted similarly unfettered access to the Canadian servers. But Megaupload objected. As Canadian Justice Gladys Pardu described Megaupload's position: "[T]here is an enormous volume of information on the servers... sending mirror image copies of all of this data would be overly broad, particularly in light of the scantiness of the evidence connecting these servers to the crimes alleged by the American prosecutors."