The Pirate Bay plans to buy Sealand

Pirates get sea base

Swedish file-sharing website The Pirate Bay is planning to buy the 550 square metre principality of Sealand, a former British naval platform in the North Sea that has been designated a 'micronation'.

The group has set up a campaign to raise money to buy the self-declared sovereign nation. Outside the jurisdiction of the UK or any other country, The Pirate Bays believes it could safely run the world's largest 'bit torrent tracker'.

Last year the Pirate Bay was closed down after raids by the Swedish police, and although it returned to a new Swedish server after a short stay in the Netherlands, the Motion Picture Ass. of America, the Swedish Anti-Piracy Bureau and the US government have all lobbied for The Pirate Bay's closure.

Sealand's royal family, Prince Roy and Princess Joan Bates and their son Prince Michael, Prince Regent, who set up the principality 40 years ago, are willing to sell the platform for £65m.

"If we do not get enough money required to buy the micronation of Sealand, we will try to buy another small island somwhere and claim it as our own country (prices start from $50,000)," the Swedish organisation says.

It is also looking at Ladonia, situated at the edge of the Scandinavian Peninsula, once ruled by King Ladon, and declared independent in 1996. ®

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