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Stratfor Hacker Could Be Sentenced to Life, Says Judge 388

Posted by timothy
from the well-that's-proportional dept.
dgharmon writes with this excerpt from rt.com: "A pretrial hearing in the case against accused LulzSec hacker Jeremy Hammond this week ended with the 27-year-old Chicago man being told he could be sentenced to life in prison for compromising the computers of Stratfor. Judge Loretta Preska told Hammond in a Manhattan courtroom on Tuesday that he could be sentenced to serve anywhere from 360 months-to-life if convicted on all charges relating to last year's hack of Strategic Forecasting, or Stratfor, a global intelligence company whose servers were infiltrated by an offshoot of the hacktivist collective Anonymous. Hammond is not likely to take the stand until next year, but so far has been imprisoned for eight months without trial. Legal proceedings in the case might soon be called into question, however, after it's been revealed that Judge Preska's husband was a victim of the Stratfor hack."
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Stratfor Hacker Could Be Sentenced to Life, Says Judge

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  • Nullified (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 23, 2012 @07:12PM (#42077639)

    8 months with no trial has completely violated his constitutional rights, therefore the state should not be able to charge him.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 23, 2012 @07:14PM (#42077665)

    Why should the sentence be any different than the very same crime committed in meat space.

    His crime is taking advantage of poor security to gain access. This would be the same as kicking in a flimsy door to gain physical access.

  • Life? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by garcia (6573) on Friday November 23, 2012 @07:15PM (#42077667) Homepage

    Murderers don't always receive life sentences. I wasn't aware the "life" of a corporation was more important than the rest of us.

  • not surprised (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 23, 2012 @07:16PM (#42077671)

    meanwhile rapists and murders get off in 5-10

    truly is a corporate run government.

  • by future assassin (639396) on Friday November 23, 2012 @07:24PM (#42077751) Homepage

    and get bailed out. Maker some intelligence company look like chumps and get life in prison. I know its the states but what happened to the punishment should fit the crime?

  • by l0ungeb0y (442022) on Friday November 23, 2012 @07:25PM (#42077753) Homepage Journal

    Crabtree notes that Hammond ... has also since been added to a terrorist watch list.

    So hacking into a Corporation will now get you labelled as a Terrorist and could land you life in prison.
    Seems that being a plain ol' armed robber and/or murderer would net you far less severe a punishment.

    Seems that if a crime happens on the internet, the punishment is automatically increased 10 fold from it's brick and mortar counter-parts.

  • by Penguinisto (415985) on Friday November 23, 2012 @07:26PM (#42077761) Journal

    I agree that the guy is getting unfairly treated (and charged, etc), but your logic sucks - no matter how flimsy the door, it's still B&E.

    The fucked-up part is, physically breaking and entering into the datacenter would likely have gotten him less potential jail time than busting in digitally.

  • Re:Nullified (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Penguinisto (415985) on Friday November 23, 2012 @07:34PM (#42077809) Journal

    If he's been arrested, it can take as long as is reasonably necessary before trial begins - and he's already been charged. If the lawyers spar a bit (discovery, pre-trial motions, change of venue, etc), then it only adds to the time spent in lock-up while waiting.

    The whole Casey Anthony thing [wikipedia.org] had her locked up for about as long, and she was found not guilty of the murder charge** - there was nothing mentioned or made of the time served while waiting for trial, IIRC. /P

    ***(IMHO the bitch did it, but legally she was found not guilty. Such is the system...)

  • Re:Nullified (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Jeremiah Cornelius (137) on Friday November 23, 2012 @07:37PM (#42077823) Homepage Journal

    The US has proven time and again, that justice is served only to those who own the system.

    Authority is no longer derived from the consent of the governed. No one consented to this.

    There is no legal basis for the existence of US government. Resistance is inevitable and necessary. You are already in violation of law, without any special effort on that account. [amazon.com] It may as well mean something.

  • by Ka D'Argo (857749) on Friday November 23, 2012 @07:37PM (#42077829) Homepage
    Oh I murdered a couple of families on the eastern seaboard, luckily all I got was life. You?

    I uh..hacked a computer network..
  • Re:not surprised (Score:5, Insightful)

    by harvey the nerd (582806) on Friday November 23, 2012 @08:03PM (#42078031)
    British Petroleum managment always gets off with no time served. Bodies and billions destroyed all over the US.
  • Wrong. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by sycodon (149926) on Friday November 23, 2012 @08:14PM (#42078109)

    It is almost universal that the defendant waives their right to a speedy trial on the advice of their attorney. Otherwise, their attorney would have to put on a defense far sooner that they would be ready.

  • Re:Nullified (Score:5, Insightful)

    by sgt scrub (869860) <saintium@ y a hoo.com> on Friday November 23, 2012 @08:14PM (#42078121)

    Imprisoned until proven innocent, unless the defendant is rich enough to afford bail, is the law. Servers him right for embarrassing wealthy people.

  • by Progman3K (515744) on Friday November 23, 2012 @08:21PM (#42078179)

    the best punishment would be a year or so in prison with the most violent and vicious criminals our society has to offer. If that doesn't discourage him from his black-hat activities then nothing will. A few before and after pictures (of both his face and anus) posted online should do the trick.

    You sir are simply a sadist.

    Even without experiencing the horrible torture you propose, you are already as cruel and depraved as if you had.

  • by ElusiveJoe (1716808) on Friday November 23, 2012 @08:25PM (#42078211)

    Corporations are virtual entitty. He tried to fuck with "priveledged" people, so he must be severely punished in order to demonstrate the power to other peasants. Sending a message is more important than any peasents' business.

    And I'm not being sarcastic.

  • Re:Nullified (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Lendrick (314723) on Friday November 23, 2012 @08:27PM (#42078233) Homepage Journal

    I was with you until you went Full Retard:

    > There is no legal basis for the existence of US government.

    Governments exist to make and enforce laws, not because of laws. Regardless of your feelings about the legitimacy of a government, in absence of a government there are no laws to speak of, so it doesn't make any sense to say that a government requires a legal basis to exist.

    Perhaps you meant that there's no ethical or philosophical basis for the existence of the US government, but even then, republics are set up so that you can replace the people in the government without armed revolution. If you can't build enough support for an electoral majority, then you're just a bunch of annoying anarchists trying to impose your will on a large group of people who don't want it. Call the government tyranny of the majority if you want, but overthrowing a democratically elected government is tyranny of the minority, which is even worse.

  • Re:Nullified (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Jeremiah Cornelius (137) on Friday November 23, 2012 @08:29PM (#42078251) Homepage Journal

    The purpose of the American Revolution was to establish, by law, Government for, by, and of, the people. The precedent necessary and in assumption were those of English Common Law and Magna Carta, etc.

  • Re:Nullified (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 23, 2012 @08:40PM (#42078331)

    The purpose of the American Revolution was to establish an oligarchy of white, landholding, slave owning, males. Because the rich white males didn't like the old one.

  • Re:Nullified (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Jeremy Erwin (2054) on Friday November 23, 2012 @08:50PM (#42078387) Journal

    Ooh, National Security. Convenient excuse, that. Stratford should have paid attention to securing it's own shit instead of crying to the FBI. Oh well. At least their reputation is in the gutter where it belongs.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 23, 2012 @09:41PM (#42078721)

    360 months (30 years) to life? Who the fuck has seen the inside of a jail cell, for any of the numerous unending scandals behind the financial crisis, that have impoverished and will impoverish many more people still? Who has seen the inside of a jail cell for engaging in war crimes, in a war of aggression, that after WWII was enshrined as one of the principle most evil acts a country can undertake? Who has seen the inside of a jail cell, for illegally spying on their citizenry, or for sanctioning that? For murdering other countries citizens (and even some of their own) in drone strikes?

    Fuck off with this utter bullshit; this guy was caught and should spend time in prison for what he did, but the length of the sentence they are going after is hideously gratuitous; this is the totally unaccountable elite trying to make an example out of someone, for giving enough of a shit to fight back, and reveal information that embarrasses that elite.

    I don't pretend that this guy or Anonymous in general work with noble intentions, it's plainly obvious many of them do it just because they like the attention and drama of high-profile hacks, and useful information gained is often incidental, but there's a lot to be said for the civil disobedience aspect of these attacks on establishment institutions; much of the information gained from Stratfor provided a valuable service to the public interest, and this guys attack should be treated as an act of civil disobedience, meriting the same level of outrage defense, of someone getting a similarly gratuitous sentence for trespassing while protesting.

    This is a government that already massively invades everyones privacy through surveillance, and is trying to gratuitously expand their attacks on peoples privacy through massive expansions on monitoring the whole Internet in the US, with the legal ability to invade anyones online and personal lives.

    If they're going to try and invade peoples privacy to such a huge degree, people should fucking fight back and legitimize digging dirt on government and connected establishment institutions through hacking, as an act of civil disobedience; if they want to invade peoples privacy and lives, but try to remain opaque and unaccountable, people should fucking well force transparency onto them, and be ready to face the legal consequences, and defend those that get caught up in gratuitous cases such as these.

  • Re:Nullified (Score:2, Insightful)

    by marcosdumay (620877) <marcosdumay@gma[ ]com ['il.' in gap]> on Friday November 23, 2012 @09:47PM (#42078763) Homepage Journal

    The US revolution was a funny thing. While the french started to question who should govern, and what are the limits on his power, the US went a step ahead, and decided that no government has the right to exist, unless the Constituion grants it that right.

    You should study it if you are interested on the subject. Their revolution is quite interesting.

  • Re:Nullified (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Shavano (2541114) on Friday November 23, 2012 @11:19PM (#42079201)
    No, they did not do that. They simply established that they were going to govern themselves according to their assumed rights and the precedents of English Common Law, with some innovations. The "right to exist" was granted to the new Federal government by the States. The Constitution was simply the document that described how it worked and how power was to be shared between it and the States.
  • Re:Nullified (Score:4, Insightful)

    by girlintraining (1395911) on Friday November 23, 2012 @11:20PM (#42079211)

    Servers him right for embarrassing wealthy people.

    Yes, people who became wealthy by making us poor, telling us there were terrorist boogiemen in the closet and under our beds, and then selling us snake oil cures like "enhanced" airport security scanners that give us cancer. Then they decide to start setting up cameras everywhere to record license plates, facial pictures, fingerprints, shopping habits, facebook profiles, private e-mail accounts... everything they can get their hands on. Why? To protect us against the boogiemen, of course. And not a single terrorist to show for it... but you know what can be shown for it? Marketing companies. Insurance companies. So-called "deep" background checks run against mid-level managers who know just enough to be dangerous, but not rich enough to be complicit and loyal to their corporate overlords without their knowledge. You can buy access to anyone's complete private data collection, just put a dollar in the jar over there labelled "For National Security Use Only".

    This guy may have been stupid, and doubly-so for getting caught... But there's an old latin proverb: "Every misfortune is to be believed when directed against the unfortunate." He's poor. They could tell us he raped thousands of young, nubile school girls before setting fire to the local orphanarium and then passing out drunk in the street... and we'd believe him... because he's poor. It's what we expect from poor people.

  • Re:Life? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by betterunixthanunix (980855) on Friday November 23, 2012 @11:39PM (#42079323)
    That is because hackers don't just act greedy. After all, they are daring to question the system, rather than just falling in line and trying to exploit other people. That is more dangerous than anything else, even more dangerous than someone who plans and executes a murder.
  • Re:Nullified (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Creepy (93888) on Friday November 23, 2012 @11:59PM (#42079433) Journal

    He is charged with a crime as bad as crossing the border and shooting a couple of police officers - top of the scale zone D federal crime (which is where the 360 months to life lies). The MINIMUM fine for such an offense is $25000 - my guess is bail is $10 million or more. With politicians and judges obviously in the corporations pockets, stealing from them has become worse than mass murder or shooting cops.

  • Re:Life? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by MrKaos (858439) on Saturday November 24, 2012 @12:13AM (#42079507) Journal

    Murderers don't always receive life sentences. I wasn't aware the "life" of a corporation was more important than the rest of us.

    Read: Don't mess with our intelligence services.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 24, 2012 @01:17AM (#42079783)

    People who actively commit criminal acts are not "political prisoners"

    Political prisoners get jailed for saying or writing things the government does not like; they are jailed for having and/or promoting the "wrong" political views

    Nasty, foul, obnoxious twits do not get to commit crimes against other citizens and lawful businesses they do not like and then claim to be political prisoners when arrested By the standards of this guy's supporters, I guess a cop who beats somebody up and then gets prosecuted would be an innocent political prisoner, right? I guess the American guards who were prosecuted for abusing prisoners at the Iraqi prison were, themselves, political prisoners right? If Mitt Romney is angry at Democrats after the election and decides to get revenge by robbing a store run by a Democrat or burning-down Democrat part headquarters and he is caught and prosecuted, does he become a "political prisoner"? In the real world, the answer would be "no" he would just be another criminal... but in lefty-world he apparently would be (but only if he was a liberal and had attacked something he thought was right-wing).

    If the politics of the StratFor hack were reversed... if this was some right-wing "hacktivist" and he had gone-after things like move-on or daily Kos, or maybe some entity that was part of the Obama campaign's internet activity would you be on his side and calling him a political prisoner? I'd bet more than a nickel that you'd be calling for his execution. You know, there were once some "hactivists" who broke into a Democrat office to try to pry loose some dirty hidden secrets... it was called "Watergate" and the left in the US still hisses about it... people on both the left AND the right called for jail time for the crooks (who did indeed go to jail). Yeah, Nixon never went to jail, but there was no evidence he ordered the break-in or knew about it before it happened... his crimes were the political ones of trying to cover it up and he paid the political price of being driven from office and having his reputation destroyed...but that's a separate issue... his "hacktivists" who broke into a "site" run by people whose politics they opposed were, irrespective of their politics or political motivations, just plain crooks... same as this jerk

  • Re:Nullified (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Jafafa Hots (580169) on Saturday November 24, 2012 @01:53AM (#42079905) Homepage Journal

    Disregard for authority?

    It's sad just how much now is characterized as "authority," including corporations.

  • by JDG1980 (2438906) on Saturday November 24, 2012 @04:43AM (#42080431)

    If Jeremy Hammond actually did commit the crimes of which he is accused (and remember he is legally entitled to the presumption of innocence), then he deserves to be punished. But it's very difficult to think of any situation where life in prison would be appropriate for what is basically a small-scale hack of the type that happens dozens if not hundreds of times every day. Stratfor is a company with 70 employees. The local library where I work has more employees than that, and probably more patrons than Stratfor has customers. If someone hacked our databases, do you think the authorities would investigate the complaint as seriously, much less try to sentence the hacker to life in prison? If someone hacked into the poorly-secured credit card data from a small restaurant and did the same amount of damage, would the authorities be treating him or her as Public Enemy No. 1? It's hard to avoid the conclusion that Hammond is being pursued with such vigor not because he broke the law, but because he committed offenses against politically powerful people, the clientele of Stratfor. (According to Wikipedia, "the company's publicity list includes Fortune 500 companies and international government agencies.") While this may not be surprising, it's a clear violation of the Constitution and needs to be fought against.

  • Re:Nullified (Score:5, Insightful)

    by dbIII (701233) on Saturday November 24, 2012 @04:55AM (#42080453)

    The man has no respect for any form of authority whatsoever. His ideal form of "government" is that he's allowed to do whatever he pleases, regardless of who it hurts, and suffers no consequences.

    I think you've just described how 80% of the people who call themselves libertarians on slashdot see themselves. Thankfully they are too timid to put their deluded "tough talking" into practice.

  • Re:Nullified (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Chas (5144) on Saturday November 24, 2012 @11:06AM (#42081509) Homepage Journal

    No. Because Libertarians believe they can do what they want so long as it doesn't impact someone else or cost someone else (who isn't willing to foot the bill) money.

    People who smoke pot in the privacy of their own homes? Problem.

    Drunk drivers who crash and kill people? Problem.

    Jeremy Hammond talks about equality. Always with the notion that special, gifted him is somehow "more equal".

    This is the guy who went into a 0-Day security group and was trying to tell the regulars they should "hold the best stuff back for themselves" so they "look like gods to the up-and-coming hackers".

    This is the guy who was teaching people to hack live servers at his day job, in an open IRC channel. And the servers he was using? Contained live customer data. Doing so without the consent of his employer.

    This is the guy who, because he didn't believe in property, was stealing every scrap of food his roomate brought home for herself and then advising for a freegan lifestyle.

    This is the guy who's breaking into servers of people who've done him no wrong. He does it, and causes damage, simply because he disagrees with them politically. Or is trying to get them to shut up.

    This is a guy whose first instinct on being heckled is to attack, tossing a bottle into a crowd.

    Here's a Vimeo copy of a DefCon 2004 talk he did. http://vimeo.com/38329327 [vimeo.com]

    Playing "Spot the Fed" was REALLY easy that year. And Hammond himself was quite nearly lynched by some of the people at his talk.

    This is a guy who thinks it's okay to simply break the stuff and vandalize the property (real or electronic) of people who don't agree with you (and anyone else in the vicinity as well).

    So PLEASE don't try to paint a general political ideology as "the same" as him.

  • Re:Nullified (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Chas (5144) on Saturday November 24, 2012 @11:15AM (#42081551) Homepage Journal

    I didn't say you SHOULD trust me. I never claimed to be non-partisan in this.

    At one time, he happened to drift into my circle of hacking and security people.
    We were friendly, but we'd made it clear from the get go that he wasn't "taking over" or using the group as a bully pulpit for his particular brand of politics.
    We'd already had the FBI scrutinizing us for another idiot who'd been in the group several years prior. And none of us wanted that kind of heat again.
    When he wasn't allowed to do what he wanted, he started vandalizing our meeting place and the surrounding community.

    Do the research yourself. Unless you're already bought into the whole "Free Jeremy" thing, it's pretty obvious what sort of person he really is.

    And, as I said. Even disliking the man the way I do. I want him to get an open and impartial hearing.

  • Re:Nullified (Score:4, Insightful)

    by hairyfeet (841228) <bassbeast1968@@@gmail...com> on Saturday November 24, 2012 @01:29PM (#42082111) Journal

    We already TRIED that, it was later called "the age of the robber barons" because i don't give a rat's ass what kind of utopia you dream up without rules it quickly devolves into "he who has the gold makes the rules' just as it has since the days of the cavemen. The problem with libertarianism (or any other ism for that matter) is at their core they all depend on those at the top not being douches when as we have seen a billion times throughout history the ONE thing you can count on is for those at the top to be giant self serving douches.

    As for TFA, evil corrupt government VS maladjusted and probably a little batshit hackers...yeah, not really anybody to root for in this fight, they ALL suck.

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