Last summer, Polish law enforcement officers arrested Artem Vaulin, the alleged founder of KickassTorrents.
Polish authorities acted on a criminal complaint from the US Government, which accused him of criminal copyright infringement and money laundering.
Facing severe back problems, Vaulin was transferred to a hospital in December, and he later continued treatment in a Warsaw prison while awaiting progress in his extradition case.
After being held in custody for nearly ten months, a breakthrough came last week when Vaulin was released on bail. The Verge reports that bail was set at $108,000 and that the alleged KickassTorrents founder now lives in a rented appartment in Warsaw.
Vaulin isn’t allowed to leave the country, but will be enjoying relative freedom, and most importantly, the company of his wife and son.
Two days before his release, The Verge’s Greg Sandoval spoke with Vaulin, who couldn’t go into detail on his alleged involvement with KickassTorrents. However, the Ukrainian entrepreneur stressed that he wasn’t looking for trouble.
“I’m a businessman. When I start a business I consult lawyers. I was never told that anything I was involved in was against the law,” Vaulin told Sandoval.
“I’m not crazy. If someone came to me to tell me the United States was angry with something I do, whatever it was, I would stop,” he added.
While life on bail is a great improvement compared to the conditions in prison, the case is not over yet. In March, the Warsaw District Court ruled in first instance that Vaulin can be extradited, but the second instance decision is still pending.
Over in the United States, the defense team also has a motion pending. In February, Vaulin’s lawyers urged the Illinois District Court to dismiss the indictment because there’s no proof of actual criminal copyright infringement.
Lead counsel Ira Rothken is happy that his client has been released on bail, and he’s confident that they will appear as victors down the road.
“We are pleased that the Court freed Artem Vaulin from prison in Poland. This will allow him to better take care of his health, be with his family, and assist in his defense,” Rothken tells TorrentFreak.
“We look forward to the US Federal Court ruling on his pending motion to dismiss. If the US indictment is defective then extradition based on the indictment is erroneous – Artem shouldn’t have to leave his family behind,” he adds.
The full coverage on The Verge has some additional comments from the alleged KAT founder, which is well worth reading.