Mr. Schmitz was allowed to go free because the presiding judge ruled that there is a lack of evidence that he had any means to flee New Zealand. The two previous judges denied his bail request as they believed he was a “significant flight risk”.
Mr. Schmitz’s freedom, however, comes at a price: the man who made his fortune online is now banned from using the internet and is prohibited from using his personal helicopter. In addition, he is not allowed to travel further than 80 kilometers from his leased mansion in Auckland’s Coatesville suburb.
Another condition of Mr. Schmitz’s release is that he is prohibited from communicating with the three other MegaUpload executives, Bram van der Kolk, Finn Batato and Mathias Ortmann, that were arrested in the reaid.
‘I am relieved to go home to see my family, my three little kids and my pregnant wife. I hope you understand that’s all I want to say right now,’ said Mr. Schmitz to reporters.
The extradition treaty is expected to begin in late August.