Friday, November 15, 2013

Anonymous Hacktivist Jeremy Hammond Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison



"Hacker Jeremy Hammond was sentenced this morning to 10 years in prison and three years of supervised release for a damaging, politically motivated computer intrusion at the private intelligence firm Stratfor in 2011."...


"In their letters to the court, however, many of Hammond's supporters said his motive to reveal the scope of the private intelligence industry outweighed whatever collateral damage was done.

"He exposed an organized and well-funded system of deception targeting American citizens and other populations worldwide," wrote Peter Ludlow, a philosophy professor at Northwestern University. "He showed that the deception was systemic, sometimes illegal, and often exceptionally disturbing." ",0,2826104.story?page=1

"He had no doubt that his sentence would be long, describing it as a "vengeful, spiteful act". He said of his prosecutors: "They have made it clear they are trying to send a message to others who come after me. A lot of it is because they got slapped around, they were embarrassed by Anonymous and they feel that they need to save face.”

Most pointedly, Hammond suggested that the FBI may have manipulated him to carry out hacking attacks on “dozens” of foreign government websites. During his time with Anonymous, the loose collective of hackers working alongside WikiLeaks and other anti-secrecy groups, he was often directed by a individual known pseudonomously on the web as “Sabu”, the leader of the Anonymous-affiliated group Lulzsec, who turned out to be an FBI informant."

"At his sentencing Friday, Hammond read a statement (please read here in full), explaining why he chose to act outside legal confines in hacking Stratfor and other corporations:

"Could I have achieved the same goals through legal means? I have tried everything from voting petitions to peaceful protest and have found that those in power do not want the truth to be exposed. When we speak truth to power we are ignored at best and brutally suppressed at worst. We are confronting a power structure that does not respect its own system of checks and balances, never mind the rights of it’s own citizens or the international community.

… While in prison I have seen for myself the ugly reality of how the criminal justice system destroys the lives of the millions of people held captive behind bars. The experience solidified my opposition to repressive forms of power and the importance of standing up for what you believe."

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