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Copyright lobbyist on Key's Hollywood agenda

Thursday 4 Oct 2012 5:05 p.m.

By Patrick Gower

In the television series The Mentalist, the lead character solves serious crimes by using his razor-sharp skills of observation.

Prime Minister John Key visited the set of The Mentalist at Warner Brothers today and met its star, Simon Baker.

But of course Mr Key's own observational skills, when it comes to Kim Dotcom at least, haven't been so flash lately.

Mr Key is in Hollywood to drum up business and create jobs for New Zealanders. But although Hollywood's business model is under threat from file-sharing sites like Megaupload, Mr Key doesn't buy into Dotcom's theory that Hollywood pressure led to the police raid on his mansion here in New Zealand.

“There are lots of great theories that Kim Dotcom and others have,” he says.

Mr Key has been saying he doesn't think the subject of Dotcom will be raised by Hollywood. But he will be having dinner with former United States senator Chris Dodd – the man who heads Hollywood’s lobby group, the Motion Picture Association of America.

Dotcom tweeted today implying Dodd was "responsible for the destruction of #megaupload & the abuse of my family".

Mr Dodd was recorded speaking about piracy just days before the Dotcom raid was conducted here in New Zealand on behalf of the United States government.

“No one is arguing that whether or not we ought to deal with these rogue foreign criminal sites that steal American jobs and products," he said. "We're now arguing about how best to do this.”

Green Party co-leader Russel Norman says that, whatever Mr Key says, he’s sure Dotcom will come up for discussion.

“The Kim Dotcom affair will be the elephant in the room and it's inconceivable that they won't discuss it.”

Labour MP Grant Robertson agrees.

“They are worried about Kim Dotcom and Megaupload - John Key doesn't want to talk about it - I'm sure they will,” he says.

Meanwhile Mr Key is writing off the concerns around Dotcom as “conspiracy theories”.

“I'd caution New Zealanders not to buy into conspiracy theories too much,” he says.

With all of Mr Key's Hollywood meetings being held behind closed doors, we'll never know what is said about Dotcom. But at least if the studio moguls ask how the extradition is going, the answer is obvious: not very well – not very well at all.

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