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TVShack founder Richard O’Dwyer avoids extradition with plea bargain

28 Nov 2012
TVShack's Richard O'Dwyer

Student Richard O'Dwyer has signed a plea bargain with US prosecutors to avoid extradition to the US over his website TVShack.

O'Dwyer's case was scheduled to be heard by the High Court this morning. But according to the BBC, O'Dwyer will travel to the US voluntarily in the next few weeks to ratify the plea bargain.

Few other details have so far been forthcoming. It is not clear if O'Dwyer will face any jail time in the UK as a result of the plea bargain.

V3 contacted the Home Office and O'Dwyer's lawyers for comment on the hearing but had received no reply at time of publication.

The 23-year-old set up the TVShack website nearly four years ago, offering links to websites which streamed movies and TV programmes, but was brought to the attention of the authorities and O'Dwyer was sentenced at a Westminster Magistrates Court in January.

The government later confirmed it had approved a request for extradition from US authorities in March, leading to widespread anger.

The case gathered more widespread attention when Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales started a petition calling for the home secretary Theresa May to intervene in his case and remove the threat of extradition.

The petition generated over 200,000 signatures in just a few days but the government remained unmoved, telling V3 that it would not be swayed by the calls.

The deal comes after the extradition saga surrounding alleged hacker Gary McKinnon finally ended when home secretary Theresa May refused to send him to the US due to health concerns.

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Dan Worth

Dan Worth is the news editor for V3 having first joined the site as a reporter in November 2009. He specialises in a raft of areas including fixed and mobile telecoms, data protection, social media and government IT. Before joining V3 Dan covered communications technology, data handling and resilience in the emergency services sector on the BAPCO Journal

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