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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 @06:12PM (#42077639)

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

    • Re:Nullified (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Penguinisto (415985) on Friday November 23, 2012 @06:34PM (#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 @06:37PM (#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.

      • Re:Nullified (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Lendrick (314723) on Friday November 23, 2012 @07:27PM (#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: (Score:2, Insightful)

          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.

        • by Zapotek (1032314)
          Everybody knows you don't go full retard...
        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by marcosdumay (620877)

          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 @10:19PM (#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.
        • by Shavano (2541114) on Friday November 23, 2012 @10:06PM (#42079151)

          I was with you until you went Full Retard:

          That's a yellow card for Improper Use of Terms.

          The proper term is Full Metal Jackass.

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      If he had been held for 8 months without being charged with a crime, then yes, you could say that his constitutional rights have been violated. But I don't think that's the case here ....

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

      Under ordinary circumstances, you would be correct. However, in issues of National Security, I don't think the speedy trial legal clauses apply but I'm not a lawyer.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Jeremy Erwin (2054)

        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 dbIII (701233) on Saturday November 24, 2012 @04:04AM (#42080481)
        National security is irrelevant when the apparent felony was a computer based attack committed against a tiny clipping agency that didn't even have a full time guy to look after their computers.
    • Re:Nullified (Score:4, Interesting)

      by iccaros (811041) on Friday November 23, 2012 @07:12PM (#42078093) Homepage
      title>

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

      ???

      He was indited in March, where he went to court, There was no bail request from his lawyers, so he waits for the courts schedule to open for the case, which was July 23rd, where he did request bail but was denied. In that inditement the prosecution request time to gather evidence, which comes to now, when the scheduled opens and time is up for the prosecution. In the constitution he is given right to a speedy trial, but what does that mean? Well normally when ever the courts have the ability, or laws set by the state, but in this case this is his third time in court so he has not been waiting, so no his constitutional rights have not be violated.

      but how were the actions of Hammond a good thing for people to hold up, The attitude of I do not agree with you so I will destroy your property is a childish way to act, and the conspiracy theories surrounding this case make it hard to tell truth from fiction.

      • Because what he did, although obviously illegal and a bad thing, should never grant him a life sentence in any remotely sane law system.
      • Are you insane?  You really think that is reasonable?

        Would you still have a job if that happened to you, and you were innocent?  How about a family?

        God.
    • Wrong. (Score:4, Insightful)

      by sycodon (149926) on Friday November 23, 2012 @07:14PM (#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: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      For obvious reasons, I'll post as an AC, but be well aware that speedy trials are not always the rule. I was accused of a serious crime. I spent 14 months in jail awaiting my trial. Fourteen months in jail because I was denied bail. I was acquitted of all charges. But of course, there are still those who believe that because I was arrested, I had to be guilty. The Police only arrest guilty people. So I just had a good lawyer. Not true!

    • Re:Nullified (Score:5, Insightful)

      by sgt scrub (869860) <<moc.oohay> <ta> <muitnias>> on Friday November 23, 2012 @07:14PM (#42078121)

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

      • Re:Nullified (Score:4, Insightful)

        by girlintraining (1395911) on Friday November 23, 2012 @10:20PM (#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.

    • At the first hearing of nearly every criminal case the defendant is asked to "waive time" Which if agreed to, waives the right to a speedy trial.

      • At the first hearing of nearly every criminal case the defendant is asked to "waive time" Which if agreed to, waives the right to a speedy trial.

        Is the choice between a speedy trial and indefinite detention? Or can the defendent waive it for a period of time of his specification after which he can choose to extend it or start the trial?

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by devleopard (317515)

      See you've been modded up to 5 while remaining an Anonymous COWARD. Hey mods, "Insightful" doesn't mean the same as, "I agree with you! Right on!" (which there is no mod status for)

      The arrested who can't bond out (either too expensive or no bond available) commonly site in jail for several months - 8 months isn't unheard of. Add to the fact that most attorneys will advise a waiver of speedy trial in order to prepare their client's case. (Who is in better shape in a speedy trial: a single attorney with a sin

  • Life? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by garcia (6573) on Friday November 23, 2012 @06:15PM (#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.

    • Re:Life? (Score:5, Informative)

      by bartosek (250249) on Friday November 23, 2012 @06:19PM (#42077707)

      Well now you know what the judicial system thinks.

    • by ElusiveJoe (1716808) on Friday November 23, 2012 @07:25PM (#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: (Score:2, Troll)

      by sgt scrub (869860)

      I'll try to catch you up since you've obviously been in a comma for a while. Reagan won, his VP's son trashed the economy and started a couple wars, and in between the clan industrialized a few of their pet projects.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prison%E2%80%93industrial_complex [wikipedia.org]

    • Re:Life? (Score:4, Insightful)

      by betterunixthanunix (980855) on Friday November 23, 2012 @10:39PM (#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:Life? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by MrKaos (858439) on Friday November 23, 2012 @11:13PM (#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 gl4ss (559668)

        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.

        but it wasn't even an intelligence service, but a fucking corporation telling people that they were one. legally it should be on the same level as hacking your local McD. though chances are you'd have access to more cc's and bank codes if you owned the local mcd's pos systems. yet the judge seems to treat it like it was a defense contractor, which it was not.

        it was just shit borderline fraud operation due to the analysis being of the quality it was and that was the thing exposed - and stratfor should never

  • not surprised (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 23, 2012 @06:16PM (#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 @06:24PM (#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 @06:25PM (#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 garcia (6573)

      Depends on what the company he hacked does and if the government considers them a part of the US computer network infrastructure.

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

      Well, the last thing we want is for these newfangled e-criminals to compete unfairly and ruin the tried and true business model of all those struggling mom-and-pop criminals out there.

    • by TheCarp (96830)

      > 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.

      Good thing he isn't black and wasn't smoking a joint when they caught him, or else he would have some of the worst debuffs the american justice game has to offer.

  • by Ka D'Argo (857749) on Friday November 23, 2012 @06:37PM (#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..
    • Oh I murdered a couple of families on the eastern seaboard, luckily all I got was life. You? I uh..hacked a computer network..

      Remember, Peacekeepers have no sense of humor.

  • nepotism

    plain and simple

    stratfor is a den of well-connected douchebags engaging in questionable activities and charging way too much for their "services"

    prosecute them

    • by tftp (111690)

      stratfor is a den of well-connected douchebags engaging in questionable activities and charging way too much for their "services"

      Services of all well-connected douchebags are not cheap. You pay for their connections. Sometimes the information is well worth the money. If you don't like the price you can always deploy your own network of spies, or you can resort to tasseography [wikipedia.org].

  • This would give the government a very scary legal precedence to scare script kiddies with.

  • by sugarmotor (621907) on Friday November 23, 2012 @06:49PM (#42077915) Homepage
    From the article

    In a press release issued under the branding of the Anonymous collective, supporters for Hammond call for Judge Preska’s immediate resignation from the case. “Judge Preska by proxy is a victim of the very crime she intends to judge Jeremy Hammond for. Judge Preska has failed to disclose the fact that her husband is a client of Stratfor and recuse herself from Jeremy's case, therefore violating multiple Sections of Title 28 of the United States Code,” the statement reads.

  • by Vince6791 (2639183) on Friday November 23, 2012 @07:28PM (#42078245)

    So when the U.S government hacks into foreign government servers and causes damage it's patriotic but a u.s citizen it's criminal. What about government monitoring every aspect of the web including your emails(email and mail same shit) without a court warrant. Anyway, the judge violated parts of the Title 28 of the United States Code, The judge by law cannot take a case where his own family member is involved in which it might affect his decision making he/she no longer impartial, and it showed. The hacker was held for that long with no bond or speedy trial, decision made by the judge, it's illegal. If this is the fault of the patriot act or ndaa for holding him without trial we are all fucking screwed. Unfortunately, when high officials abuse human rights they get fired and never see jail time. This whole government is acting like a fucking monarchy, like they are all kings or fucking special. Government will never work because people are corrupt by nature this is why we should build machines with impartial behavior built in their cpu to rule us all.

    • by jbolden (176878)

      So when the U.S government hacks into foreign government servers and causes damage it's patriotic but a u.s citizen it's criminal.

      Yes. The state is empowered to do many things you aren't. For example if you hold people against their will that's kidnapping and unlawful imprisonment, they get to openly run a prison system.

      The hacker was held for that long with no bond or speedy trial, decision made by the judge,

      That's not true. The hacker waived his right to a speedy trial. That right rests with the

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 23, 2012 @08:41PM (#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.

  • by JDG1980 (2438906) on Saturday November 24, 2012 @03:43AM (#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.

Vitamin C deficiency is apauling.

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