The United States Justice Department filed charges against MegaUpload today, calling the file-sharing service an "international organized criminal enterprise allegedly responsible for massive worldwide online piracy." Founder Kim Dotcom and three MegaUpload executives were arrested today in Auckland, New Zealand at the request of the US government under provisional arrest warrants, and the DOJ describes three other execs as "at large."
The complaint alleges that MegaUpload, founder Kim Dotcom, and his team are responsible for $175 million in "criminal proceeds" and "more than half a billion dollars in harm to copyright owners." Specifically, Kim Dotcom and six of his executives are charged with running "the Mega conspiracy websites" under a business model "expressly designed to promote uploading of the most popular copyrighted works." The DOJ also says MegaUpload also developed its uploader rewards program as a means of laundering money.
More information here. Combined with yesterday's protests, this is sure to keep online piracy issues in the conversation for a good long while.