According to Dotcom’s account, he met Rich online, when a person with the handle, “Panda,” contacted him about starting a US branch of Dotcom’s Internet Party in 2014. Dotcom claims that Panda was actually Seth Rich, but does not explain how he learned Panda’s identity. Dotcom does not say if he ever met Panda or Rich in person.
Dotcom said that the referred to what he had learned from Panda when discussed WikiLeaks founder, Julian Assange, in a 2015 interview with Bloomberg (shorter clip here). When asked about a tweet in which he said that he would be “Hillary’s worst nightmare in 2016,” Dotcom answered, “Well, I have to say it’s probably more Julian. But I’m aware of some of the things that are going to be roadblocks for her.” When pressed, Dotcom denied that he knew specifically what Assange had planned.
In the statement, Dotcom declined to give further details, saying “my full statement should be provided to the authorities and I am prepared to do that so that there can be a full investigation.” Dotcom asked for “a guarantee from Special Counsel Mueller, on behalf of the United States, of safe passage from New Zealand to the United States and back” if he is required to come to the US to present his evidence. Dotcom is currently fighting extradition from New Zealand to the US, where he faces charges of money laundering, racketeering and wire fraud.
The family of Seth Rich rejected Dotcom’s claims and pointed out that he had provided no evidence to substantiate his claims. “The Rich family is tired of having to respond to accusations,” a spokesman for the family said in a statement. “The burden of proof is on Mr. Dotcom to either prove he has evidence or face the consequences of damaging Seth’s good name and creating more emotional hardship on a grieving family. The family is not going to entertain his ridiculous, manipulative and completely non-credible statements.”