Popular BitTorrent file sharing site Kickass Torrents (sometimes also knows as KAT or KAT.cr) is down after the arrest of the site’s owner Artem Vaulin, who is reportedly 30-years-old and hails from Kharkiv, Ukraine.
Vaulin was arrested earlier today in Poland by the U.S. authorities and is now being charged for his involvement in criminal copyright infringement and money laundering. The U.S. Government is now also seeking his extradition to the U.S. from Poland.
In addition to the said arrest made today, the site’s .com, .tv, .cr, and other domains, as well as any bank accounts associated with it, are also being seized on the court’s order.
“Vaulin is charged with running today’s most visited illegal file-sharing website, responsible for unlawfully distributing well over $1 billion of copyrighted materials,” said Assistant Attorney General Caldwell. “In an effort to evade law enforcement, Vaulin allegedly relied on servers located in countries around the world and moved his domains due to repeated seizures and civil lawsuits. His arrest in Poland, however, demonstrates again that cybercriminals can run, but they cannot hide from justice.”
At the time of writing, most of KAT’s domains appear to be down even though KAT’s status page at kastatus.com shows everything is running fine.
If KAT’s domains remain down, as they are right now, clones of KAT will start appearing online. We’ll recommend everyone to stay clear of all such clone sites as they could have malicious intent of infecting your computer.
We’ll update the story as soon as we get to know more on it. Stay tuned.
(source: U.S. Department of Justice)
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