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Responses to Jeremy Hammond Sentencing (Lawyer & media)
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darkhorse Offline
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Video Responses to Jeremy Hammond Sentencing (Lawyer & media)
Chris Hedges and Alexa O'Brian on Jeremy Hammond





Published on Nov 15, 2013
Chris Hegdes and Alexa O'Brian on Jeremy Hammond


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Jeremy Hammond's lawyer reacts to full prison sentence





Published on Nov 15, 2013
Jeremy Hammond's lawyer reacts to full prison sentence


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Alexa O'Brien's Statement on Jeremy Hammond's Sentencing Verdict

November 15, 2013 3:21 PM

'I did this because I believe people have a right to know what governments and corporations are doing behind closed doors. I did what I believe is right.' - Jeremy Hammond

Today, Jeremy Hammond was sentenced to ten years in prison and three years of supervised release for hacking into the computers of the private intelligence firm Strategic Forecasting (Stratfor).

Stratfor emails published by WikiLeaks revealed that private security contractors with ties to the US Government were "specifically asked to connect" a campaign finance reform group that I helped found "to any Saudi or other fundamentalist Islamic movements."

The email was part of a number of submissions to the Court in the case Hedges v. Obama against indefinite detention of the 2012 National Defense Authorization Act.

Section 1021(b)(2) of the NDAA FY2012 allows for the indefinite detention without charges or trial of anyone, including American citizens, who are deemed by the US Government to be terrorists or terrorist sympathizers.

U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest permanently enjoined Section 1021(b)(2) in September 2012. We are making an application to the Supreme Court after the Second Circuit overturned Forrest's ruling.

Today, I was asked to give a statement after Hammond's sentencing hearing, which I did. I was also asked to publish it online. My statement is below.


A specter is haunting the West--

A specter of what some call dissent--

This specter of dissent is largely unarticulated in our public discourse--

Obscured, as it were-- by the bare-knuckled extremities on the left and right hands of our corporate politic--

Peaceable assemblies are called unlawful mobs;

Distributed denial-of-service sit-ins on publicly available websites are called cyber-attacks;

Disclosing documents to a journalist or publisher, which reveal government and corporate wrong-doing and criminality is called espionage and computer fraud and abuse;

Aiding in the independent dissemination of large datasets of suppressed information onto the Internet is called wanton publication and aiding the enemy;

Reporting on the U.S. global war on terror by interviewing former GTMO detainees or providing proof of secret U.S. cluster bombing in Yemen is called "substantial support for terrorism";

Making documentary films about one's confinement at GTMO after being detained for years without charges or trial is called "terrorist recidivism".

In actuality, this specter of dissent is an inevitable consequence of the system in which it haunts.

A system based on the brutal and arbitrary application of power--

When we examine this so-called dissent more closely, it is neither dissent nor is it a specter--it is the embodiment of the simplest aims of life.

It is incarnate in the acts of conscience of individuals like Chelsea Manning and Jeremy Hammond, and in the millions of people across the globe who showed up to public squares from Tahrir to Wall Street because they thought for one second that they could participate authentically in the social contract as free men and women.

These acts of so-called dissent do not spring from a marketing campaign or a brand--

They spring from a desire to influence one's own destiny-- to make genuine contributions to civilization-- to engage the intelligence and genuine good will of others--and to try to remedy the myriad ills and abuses of a corrupt and illegitimate system, which preys on the resources and spirits of people.

They are as natural to men and women as breathing--

If the simplest aims of life are dissent then breathing is dissent. Not wanting to murder is dissent. Being incapable of believing lies after you have seen the facts is dissent.

It is the system, which is the specter, because it is built for ghosts, and not for the living, and that is why it has to bury Hammond and Manning alive. It is built for the ignorant and the uninformed. It is built on lies.

Do not be ashamed because you are dissatisfied with settling for the patronage of elites--

Who claim that they are a better arbiter of the truth, than you are--

They aren't.

They merely control the information.

With one hand they are building media empires on the backs of independent publishers--

Independent publishers who they are strangling in their other hand with extra-legal banking blockades--

There is absolutely the possibility of a better kind of debate than privileged pundits talking about themselves amongst themselves for their own benefit.

Thanks to Hammond and Manning, we are building that press.

Do not be ashamed because you are dissatisfied with settling for a political party or a Congress that fails to deliberate causing people to deliberate in public parks.

Thanks to Manning and Hammond, we are building an assembly that can deliberate--

Finally, trust the process.

I am not talking about the process that unfolded in the courtroom behind me today, but the process that is unfolding in the courtroom that we are building right here--
The sound of three foot stomps.

The verdict of the ages is in--

The free spirit of men and women will not and cannot be conquered.

When an 18th century philosophy, 19th century institutions, 20th century outlook, and 21st century problems present us with a vision that WE cannot afford to built on, bank on, or believe in.

Then the free spirit of men and women will build on, bank on, and believe in something else.

We are doing it right now.

Thanks to Hammond and Manning and the countless others before them, and countless more who most certainly will come--

Because this conflict is unavoidable--

Link to Alexa O'Brien's website (recommend visiting)

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Rolling Stone Magazine's Response:

Cyber-Activist Jeremy Hammond Sentenced to 10 Years In Prison

The hacker, who pleaded guilty in May, is given the maximum sentence by a federal judge

By John Knefel, November 15, 2013 2:45 PM ET

Cyber-activist Jeremy Hammond was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison this morning by Judge Loretta A. Preska in a federal courtroom in lower Manhattan for hacking the private intelligence firm Stratfor. When released, Hammond will be placed under supervised control, the terms of which include a prohibition on encryption or attempting to anonymize his identity online.

Hammond has shown a "total lack of respect for the law," Judge Preska said in her ruling, citing Hammond's criminal record – which includes a felony conviction for hacking from when he was 19 – and what she called "unrepentant recidivism." There is a "desperate need to promote respect for the law," she said, as well as a "need for adequate public deterrence."

As Hammond was led into the courtroom, he looked over the roughly 100 supporters who had shown up, smiled, and said, "What's up, everybody?" Prior to the verdict, he read from a prepared statement and said it was time for him to step away from hacking as a form of activism, but recognized that tactic's continuing importance. "Those in power do not want the truth exposed," Hammond said from the podium, wearing black prison garb. He later stated that the injustices he has fought against "cannot be cured by reform, but by civil disobedience and direct action." He spoke out against capitalism and a wide range of other social ills, including mass incarceration and crackdowns on protest movements.

The Stratfor hack exposed previously unknown corporate spying on activists and organizers, including PETA and the Yes Men, and was largely constructed by the FBI using an informant named Hector Monsegur, better known by his online alias Sabu. Co-defendants in the U.K. were previously sentenced to relatively lighter terms. Citing Hammond's record, Judge Preska said "there will not be any unwarranted sentencing disparity" between her ruling and the U.K. court's decision.

Click here to read more of article...

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The Guardian's Response:

Jeremy Hammond: FBI directed my attacks on foreign government sites

Anonymous hacktivist told court FBI informant and fellow hacker Sabu supplied him with list of countries vulnerable to cyber-attack

Ed Pilkington, theguardian.com, Saturday 16 November 2013 07.22 AEST

The Anonymous hacktivist sentenced on Friday to 10 years in federal prison for his role in releasing thousands of emails from the private intelligence firm Stratfor has told a Manhattan court that he was directed by an FBI informant to break into the official websites of several governments around the world.

Jeremy Hammond, 28, told a federal court for the southern district of New York that a fellow hacker who went under the internet pseudonym “Sabu” had supplied him with lists of websites that were vulnerable to attack, including those of many foreign countries. The defendant mentioned specifically Brazil, Iran and Turkey before being stopped by judge Loretta Preska, who had ruled previously that the names of all the countries involved should be redacted to retain their secrecy.

Within a couple of hours of the hearing, the three countries had been identified publicly by Forbes, the Huffington Post and Twitter feeds serving more than a million followers. “I broke into numerous sites and handed over passwords and backdoors that enabled Sabu – and by extension his FBI handlers – to control these targets,” Hammond told the court.

The 28-year-old hacker has floated the theory in the past that he was used as part of an effective private army by the FBI to target vulnerable foreign government websites, using the informant Sabu – real name Hector Xavier Monsegur – as a go-between. Sabu, who was a leading figure in the Anonymous-affiliated hacking group LulzSec, was turned by the FBI into one of its primary informants on the hacker world after he was arrested in 2011, about six months before the Stratfor website was breached.

Referring to the hacking of foreign government websites, Hammond said that in one instance, he and Sabu provided details on how to crack into the websites of one particular unidentified country to other hackers who then went on to deface and destroy those websites. “I don’t know how other information I provided to [Sabu] may have been used, but I think the government’s collection and use of this data needs to be investigated,” he told the court

He added: “The government celebrates my conviction and imprisonment, hoping that it will close the door on the full story. I took responsibility for my actions, by pleading guilty, but when will the government be made to answer for its crimes?”

Hammond’s 10-year federal prison service makes it one of the longest punishments dished out for criminal hacking offences in US history. It joins a lengthening line of long jail terms imposed on hackers and whistleblowers as part of the US authorities' attempt to contain data security of government agencies and corporations in the digital age.

Preska also imposed a three-year period of probationary supervision once Hammond is released from jail that included extraordinary measures designed to prevent him ever hacking again. The terms of the supervision state that when he is out of prison he must: have no contact with “electronic civil disobedience websites or organisations”; have all his internet activity monitored; subject himself to searches of his body, house, car or any other possessions at any time without warrant; and never do anything to hide his identity on the internet.

Click here to read rest of article...

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Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison, Jeremy Hammond Uses Allocution to Give Consequential Statement Highlighting Global Criminal Exploits by FBI Handlers

The Sparrow Project, November 15, 2013

[Image: jeremy-hammond-by-molly-crabapple-620x424.jpg]
Jeremy Hammond, by Molly Crabapple

[NEW YORK, NY] Jeremy Hammond, a 28-year-old political activist, was sentenced today to 10 years in prison after pleading guilty to participating in the Anonymous hack into the computers of the private intelligence firm Strategic Forecasting (Stratfor). The Ceremonial Courtroom at the Federal Court for the Southern District of New York was filled today with an outpouring of support by journalists, activists and other whistleblowers who see Jeremy Hammond’s actions as a form of civil disobedience, motivated by a desire to protest and expose the secret activities of private intelligence corporations.

Link to Sparrow Project Article

The hearing opened with arguments as to what sections of the court record will remain redacted after sentencing. While Jeremy’s attorneys initially erred on the side of caution in previous memorandums and kept large pieces of the record redacted, both the defense and prosecution agreed this morning that many of the sections should now be made available for public view. The prosecution, however took stiff exception to portions of the court record being made public that indicate victims, specifically foreign governments, that Jeremy allegedly hacked under the direction of Hector “Sabu” Monsegur, the FBI informant at the helm of Jeremy’s alleged actions. Judge Preska ordered that the names of these foreign governments remain sealed.

Click here to read more.....

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WikiLeaks published this letter of support from the world media, along with this statement:

Hammond Support Letter from World Media

Friday 15 November, 2013 18:00 GMT

Today, November 15th 2013, Jeremy Hammond was sentenced to a maximum ten years in jail, with three years of supervised release thereafter.

On 14 October 2013, before the sentence was given by Judge Loretta Preska, a letter was signed by editors and journalists around the world that attested to the importance of the material Hammond was allegedly the source of. This letter was sent to Judge Preska and asked for leniency in the disproportionate possible sentence. Judge Loretta Preska however failed to show any leniency, ignoring the consequences of setting a precedent for prosecution of journalistic sources, as well as the criminality that the leaks reveal. This letter is published today by WikiLeaks.

Jeremy Hammond is a young activist and computer programmer who was accused of being the source of emails from the private global intelligence firm Strategic Forecasting, or Stratfor. The emails revealed information on a broad range of issues, including a US Department of Homeland Security report on tracking of Occupy Wall Street and Stratfor spying on Bhopal activists. In May 2013, Jeremy pleaded guilty to one count of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, reducing his possible maximum sentence to a still hugely disproportionate ten years.

Today, Hammond was sentenced to the maximum ten years in jail, followed by 3 years of restricted release. During those three years Hammond’s actions will be supervised and he will be prevented from using internet security tools such as Tor and encryption, and will not be allowed to associate with any civil disobedience organisation.

Letter of support for Jeremy Hammond from world media

Link to PDF

Link to WikiLeaks website with statement

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JEREMY’ HAMMOND SENTENCING STATEMENT | 11/15/2013

C/- Sparrow Media

Good morning. Thank you for this opportunity. My name is Jeremy Hammond and I’m here to be sentenced for hacking activities carried out during my involvement with Anonymous. I have been locked up at MCC for the past 20 months and have had a lot of time to think about how I would explain my actions.

Before I begin, I want to take a moment to recognize the work of the people who have supported me. I want to thank all the lawyers and others who worked on my case: Elizabeth Fink, Susan Kellman, Sarah Kunstler, Emily Kunstler, Margaret Kunstler, and Grainne O’Neill. I also want to thank the National Lawyers Guild, the Jeremy Hammond Defense Committee and Support Network, Free Anons, the Anonymous Solidarity Network, Anarchist Black Cross, and all others who have helped me by writing a letter of support, sending me letters, attending my court dates, and spreading the word about my case. I also want to shout out my brothers and sisters behind bars and those who are still out there fighting the power.

The acts of civil disobedience and direct action that I am being sentenced for today are in line with the principles of community and equality that have guided my life. I hacked into dozens of high profile corporations and government institutions, understanding very clearly that what I was doing was against the law, and that my actions could land me back in federal prison. But I felt that I had an obligation to use my skills to expose and confront injustice—and to bring the truth to light.

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.

My introduction to politics was when George W. Bush stole the Presidential election in 2000, then took advantage of the waves of racism and patriotism after 9/11 to launch unprovoked imperialist wars against Iraq and Afghanistan. I took to the streets in protest naively believing our voices would be heard in Washington and we could stop the war. Instead, we were labeled as traitors, beaten, and arrested.

I have been arrested for numerous acts of civil disobedience on the streets of Chicago, but it wasn’t until 2005 that I used my computer skills to break the law in political protest. I was arrested by the FBI for hacking into the computer systems of a right-wing, pro-war group called Protest Warrior, an organization that sold racist t-shirts on their website and harassed anti-war groups. I was charged under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, and the “intended loss” in my case was arbitrarily calculated by multiplying the 5000 credit cards in Protest Warrior’s database by $500, resulting in a total of $2.5 million. My sentencing guidelines were calculated on the basis of this “loss,” even though not a single credit card was used or distributed – by me or anyone else. I was sentenced to two years in prison.

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.

When I was released, I was eager to continue my involvement in struggles for social change. I didn’t want to go back to prison, so I focused on above-ground community organizing. But over time, I became frustrated with the limitations, of peaceful protest, seeing it as reformist and ineffective. The Obama administration continued the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, escalated the use of drones, and failed to close Guantanamo Bay.

Around this time, I was following the work of groups like Wikileaks and Anonymous. It was very inspiring to see the ideas of hactivism coming to fruition. I was particularly moved by the heroic actions of Chelsea Manning, who had exposed the atrocities committed by U.S. forces in Iraq and Afghanistan. She took an enormous personal risk to leak this information – believing that the public had a right to know and hoping that her disclosures would be a positive step to end these abuses. It is heart-wrenching to hear about her cruel treatment in military lockup.

I thought long and hard about choosing this path again. I had to ask myself, if Chelsea Manning fell into the abysmal nightmare of prison fighting for the truth, could I in good conscience do any less, if I was able? I thought the best way to demonstrate solidarity was to continue the work of exposing and confronting corruption.

I was drawn to Anonymous because I believe in autonomous, decentralized direct action. At the time Anonymous was involved in operations in support of the Arab Spring uprisings, against censorship, and in defense of Wikileaks. I had a lot to contribute, including technical skills, and how to better articulate ideas and goals. It was an exciting time – the birth of a digital dissent movement, where the definitions and capabilities of hacktivism were being shaped.

I was especially interested in the work of the hackers of LulzSec who were breaking into some significant targets and becoming increasingly political. Around this time, I first started talking to Sabu, who was very open about the hacks he supposedly committed, and was encouraging hackers to unite and attack major government and corporate systems under the banner of Anti Security. But very early in my involvement, the other Lulzsec hackers were arrested, leaving me to break into systems and write press releases. Later, I would learn that Sabu had been the first one arrested, and that the entire time I was talking to him he was an FBI informant.

Anonymous was also involved in the early stages of Occupy Wall Street. I was regularly participating on the streets as part of Occupy Chicago and was very excited to see a worldwide mass movement against the injustices of capitalism and racism. In several short months, the “Occupations” came to an end, closed by police crackdowns and mass arrests of protestors who were kicked out of their own public parks. The repression of Anonymous and the Occupy Movement set the tone for Antisec in the following months – the majority of our hacks against police targets were in retaliation for the arrests of our comrades.

I targeted law enforcement systems because of the racism and inequality with which the criminal law is enforced. I targeted the manufacturers and distributors of military and police equipment who profit from weaponry used to advance U.S. political and economic interests abroad and to repress people at home. I targeted information security firms because they work in secret to protect government and corporate interests at the expense of individual rights, undermining and discrediting activists, journalists and other truth seekers, and spreading disinformation.

I had never even heard of Stratfor until Sabu brought it to my attention. Sabu was encouraging people to invade systems, and helping to strategize and facilitate attacks. He even provided me with vulnerabilities of targets passed on by other hackers, so it came as a great surprise when I learned that Sabu had been working with the FBI the entire time.

On December 4, 2011, Sabu was approached by another hacker who had already broken into Stratfor’s credit card database. Sabu, under the watchful eye of his government handlers, then brought the hack to Antisec by inviting this hacker to our private chatroom, where he supplied download links to the full credit card database as well as the initial vulnerability access point to Stratfor’s systems.

I spent some time researching Stratfor and reviewing the information we were given, and decided that their activities and client base made them a deserving target. I did find it ironic that Stratfor’s wealthy and powerful customer base had their credit cards used to donate to humanitarian organizations, but my main role in the attack was to retrieve Stratfor’s private email spools which is where all the dirty secrets are typically found.

It took me more than a week to gain further access into Stratfor’s internal systems, but I eventually broke into their mail server. There was so much information, we needed several servers of our own in order to transfer the emails. Sabu, who was involved with the operation at every step, offered a server, which was provided and monitored by the FBI. Over the next weeks, the emails were transferred, the credit cards were used for donations, and Stratfor’s systems were defaced and destroyed. Why the FBI would introduce us to the hacker who found the initial vulnerability and allow this hack to continue remains a mystery.

As a result of the Stratfor hack, some of the dangers of the unregulated private intelligence industry are now known. It has been revealed through Wikileaks and other journalists around the world that Stratfor maintained a worldwide network of informants that they used to engage in intrusive and possibly illegal surveillance activities on behalf of large multinational corporations.

After Stratfor, I continued to break into other targets, using a powerful “zero day exploit” allowing me administrator access to systems running the popular Plesk webhosting platform. Sabu asked me many times for access to this exploit, which I refused to give him. Without his own independent access, Sabu continued to supply me with lists of vulnerable targets.

I broke into numerous websites he supplied, uploaded the stolen email accounts and databases onto Sabu’s FBI server, and handed over passwords and backdoors that enabled Sabu (and, by extension, his FBI handlers) to control these targets. These intrusions, all of which were suggested by Sabu while cooperating with the FBI, affected thousands of domain names and consisted largely of foreign government websites, including those of XXXXXXX, XXXXXXXX, XXXX, XXXXXX, XXXXX, XXXXXXXX, XXXXXXX and the XXXXXX XXXXXXX. In one instance, Sabu and I provided access information to hackers who went on to deface and destroy many government websites in XXXXXX. I don’t know how other information I provided to him may have been used, but I think the government’s collection and use of this data needs to be investigated.

The government celebrates my conviction and imprisonment, hoping that it will close the door on the full story. I took responsibility for my actions, by pleading guilty, but when will the government be made to answer for its crimes?

The U.S. hypes the threat of hackers in order to justify the multi billion dollar cyber security industrial complex, but it is also responsible for the same conduct it aggressively prosecutes and claims to work to prevent. The hypocrisy of “law and order” and the injustices caused by capitalism cannot be cured by institutional reform but through civil disobedience and direct action. Yes I broke the law, but I believe that sometimes laws must be broken in order to make room for change.

In the immortal word of Frederick Douglas, “Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. Find out just what any people will quietly submit to and you have found out the exact measure of injustice and wrong which will be imposed upon them, and these will continue till they are resisted with either words or blows, or both. The limits of tyrants are prescribed by the endurance of those whom they oppress.”

This is not to say that I do not have any regrets. I realize that I released the personal information of innocent people who had nothing to do with the operations of the institutions I targeted. I apologize for the release of data that was harmful to individuals and irrelevant to my goals. I believe in the individual right to privacy – from government surveillance, and from actors like myself, and I appreciate the irony of my own involvement in the trampling of these rights. I am committed to working to make this world a better place for all of us. I still believe in the importance of hactivism as a form of civil disobedience, but it is time for me to move on to other ways of seeking change. My time in prison has taken a toll on my family, friends, and community. I know I am needed at home. I recognize that 7 years ago I stood before a different federal judge, facing similar charges, but this does not lessen the sincerity of what I say to you today.

It has taken a lot for me to write this, to explain my actions, knowing that doing so — honestly — could cost me more years of my life in prison. I am aware that I could get as many as 10 years, but I hope that I do not, as I believe there is so much work to be done.

STAY STRONG AND KEEP STRUGGLING!

To schedule interviews with Jeremy Hammond’s attorneys and supporters following today’s sentencing please contact Andy Stepanian, 631.291.3010, andy@sparrowmedia.net.
11-16-2013 10:02 AM
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RE: Responses to Jeremy Hammond Sentencing (Lawyer & media)
Additional article from Guardian.com

Jailed Anonymous hacker Jeremy Hammond: 'My days of hacking are done'

Hammond calls his 10-year sentence a 'vengeful, spiteful act' by US authorities eager to put a chill on political hacking

Ed Pilkington in New York, Saturday 16 November 2013 04.12 AEST

[Image: 2c97abe1-4936-4ca4-b07f-126781329f1a-460x276.jpeg]
'I knew when I started out with Anonymous that being put in jail and having a lengthy sentence was a possibility,' Hammond said. Photo: AP
Jeremy Hammond, the Anonymous hacktivist who released millions of emails relating to the private intelligence firm Stratfor, has denounced his prosecution and lengthy prison sentence as a “vengeful, spiteful act” designed to put a chill on politically-motivated hacking.

Hammond was sentenced on Friday at federal court in Manhattan to the maximum 10 years in jail, plus three years supervised release. He had pleaded guilty to one count under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) flowing from his 2011 hack of Strategic Forecasting, Inc, known as Stratfor. In an interview with the Guardian in the Metropolitan Correction Center in New York, conducted on Thursday, he said he was resigned to a long prison term which he sees as a conscious attempt by the US authorities to put a chill on political hacking.

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.

Hammond, who is under court orders restricting what he says in public, told the Guardian that Sabu presented him with a list of targets, including many foreign government sites, and encouraged him to break into their computer systems. He said he was not sure whether Sabu was in turn acting on behalf of the FBI or other US government agency, but it was even possible that the FBI was using Sabu’s internet handle directly as contact between the two hackers was always made through cyberspace, never face-to-face.

“It is kind of funny that here they are sentencing me for hacking Stratfor, but at the same time as I was doing that an FBI informant was suggesting to me foreign targets to hit. So you have to wonder how much they really care about protecting the security of websites.”

In the interview, conducted in a secure prison meeting room hours before the 28-year-old Chicagoan was sentenced, he was sanguine about his prospects. “I knew when I started out with Anonymous that being put in jail and having a lengthy sentence was a possibility. Given the nature of the targets I was going after I knew I would upset a lot of powerful people.”

Dressed in a brown prison jump suit, and with a long wispy goatee and moustache (he planned to shave both off before the sentencing hearing), Hammond was scathing about the way the CFAA was being twisted in his view for political ends. “They are widening the definition of what is covered by the Act and using it to target specifically political activists,” he said.

Click here to read more of the Guardian article
11-16-2013 10:35 AM
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RE: Responses to Jeremy Hammond Sentencing (Lawyer & media)
Voice of Russia Response:

'Vengeful, spiteful act' by US: Anonymous hacker Jeremy Hammond sentenced to 10 years

November 15, 2013

[Image: 7fewfe.jpg]
Jeremy Hammond, Photo: AFP

Internet activist Jeremy Hammond who pleaded guilty to hacking servers of the private intelligence company Statfor and leaking its information to anti-secrecy site, WikiLeaks, was sentenced to ten years in jail on Friday, November 15. The Anonymous hacktivist has denounced his prosecution and lengthy prison sentence as a "vengeful, spiteful act" designed to put a chill on politically-motivated hacking.

Jeremy Hammond, 28, was sentenced on Friday at federal court in Manhattan to the maximum 10 years in jail, plus three years supervised release. He was handed the prison term after he had admitted in May to hacking into Strategic Forecasting Inc in December 2011, an attack his lawyers contend was driven by concern about the role of private firms in gathering intelligence domestically and abroad.

Prosecutors say the hack of Austin, Texas-based Strategic Forecasting, or Stratfor, resulted in the theft of 60,000 credit card numbers and records for 860,000 clients, which were then uploaded online.

Hammond's lawyers argued their client should be sentenced to only time he had already served since his March 2012 arrest, portraying him as a political activist and whistleblower.

As part of the Stratfor attack, Hammond's lawyers said he turned over company e-mails to the anti-secrecy group WikiLeaks, which has since selectively released documents revealing the firm's dealings with clients including Goldman Sachs Group Inc and Coca-Cola Company.

The defendant had pleaded guilty to a single charge of conspiracy to engage in computer hacking.

In an interview with the Guardian in the Metropolitan Correction Center in New York, conducted on Thursday, Jeremy Hammond said he was resigned to a long prison term which he sees as a conscious attempt by the US authorities to put a chill on political hacking.

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."

After pleading guilty during the trial, Hammond released a statement admitting that he also worked with the activist group, Anonymous, to hack into other websites, including those of the military, private intelligence suppliers, law enforcement agencies, information security firms, and more.

"I did this because I believe people have the right to know what government and corporations are doing behind closed doors. I did what I believe is right," he wrote in his statement.

In August, Hammond released a statement suggesting that while Sabu aided the FBI, the bureau also used him to encourage other group members to hack various websites at the agency’s choosing, including those of foreign governments.

"What the United States could not accomplish legally, it used Sabu, and by extension, me and my co-defendants, to accomplish illegally," Hammond wrote. "Why was the United States using us to infiltrate the private networks of foreign governments? What are they doing with the information we stole? And will anyone in our government ever be held accountable for these crimes?"

On Friday, reading his sentencing statement, Hammond again insisted that he shared information about online vulnerabilities with FBI informant Sabu, who later targeted websites in Turkey, Iran and Brazil.

The release of internal emails belonging to Strategic Forecasting Inc. or Stratfor, has become one of the most successful operations ever conducted by the hacktivist group, Anonymous, which Hammond admitted to being part of. A trove of emails attributed to Stratfor executives suggested that the private company, which employs many former officials from the CIA and other government agencies, kept close ties with the security apparatus.

In particular, the emails published by WikiLeaks suggested that Stratfor was hired by private companies and government agencies alike to monitor political protesters and activists, including members of Occupy Wall Street and People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA).

Hammond's sentencing drew more than 250 letters of support from family, friends and activists, including Daniel Ellsberg, the former US military analyst who in 1971 released the Pentagon Papers, the top secret USreport on its role in the Vietnam War.

Link to original article
11-16-2013 11:17 AM
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RE: Responses to Jeremy Hammond Sentencing (Lawyer & media)
Democracy Now! responds:

November 15, 2013.

Jeremy Hammond Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison for Cyber-Activism
Today in a federal courtroom in Manhattan, cyber-activist Jeremy Hammond was sentenced to 10 years in prison for hacking the private intelligence firm Stratfor. Watch a press conference with his attorneys.


Link to video

SARAH KUNSTLER: We fought the good fight. We talked about Jeremy’s motivations and why he did what he did. We talked about the life that he led. And, unfortunately, we were unable to persuade the judge to give him less than the maximum in this case, which was 10 years. I think when Jeremy took this plea with a 10-year maximum, that he understood that this was—this was a very likely outcome for him.

MARGARET RATNER KUNSTLER: We have been in front of this judge on a number of appearances, and we have not found her to be particularly sympathetic to Jeremy. We don’t think that she has the beginning of an understanding of the hacker movement. And she certainly doesn’t have an understanding of the vocabulary used in chat rooms and by hacktivists online. I mean, she—it’s a very overstated vocabulary, and they use the word "kill." They don’t mean "kill." They use the word "havoc." They use the word "mayhem." But it’s—it’s the way they talk. And she used that against him to deny any social value to the actual work he did, and therefore—and really just used his words against him.

SARAH KUNSTLER: The words that the judge used a lot and that the government used a lot in their sentencing submission were "maximum mayhem." And the government and the judge felt that the idea of causing mayhem or causing destruction was incompatible with Jeremy’s stated political goals. And we disagree with that. You know, advocating for political change, struggling for political change involves being disruptive at times. It involves being destructive at times. These are some ways the—sometimes the only pathways to change.

KEVIN GOSZTOLA: The key to this case is that we see that there is no willingness by judges to distinguish between acts of hacking for civil disobedience or political purposes and acts of hacking that are malicious. So there’s no recognition of hacktivism under the law.

ROY SINGHAM: The thing that bothers me also in this case is the discrepancy in the sentencing. One of the things that was said by Aaron Swartz’s father at his funeral was that the crime that Aaron or people like Jeremy, who got financial gain out of these things, they’re getting 10 years, whereas other titans of the tech industry who abuse in certain ways public property, taking government, you know, lists of students at universities, using free resources, these people, these titans of tech industry, they are celebrated by our society as innovators, as disruptors. Why the discrepancy? No charges against these people, yet 10 years for Jeremy—this is an unacceptable outcome for the tech sector. And I say, "Shame on the rest of the tech sector for not coming to Jeremy’s defense."

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11-16-2013 11:33 AM
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darkhorse Offline
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RE: Responses to Jeremy Hammond Sentencing (Lawyer & media)
Hacktivist Jeremy Hammond sentenced to 10 years in prison





Published on Nov 15, 2013, by RT America.

RT's Anastasia Churkina reports from the Manhattan courthouse where hacker and activist Jeremy Hammond was sentenced to a maximum time behind bars of 10 years for breaking into 5 million emails of private security firm Stratfor and leaking the information to Wikileaks. The emails Hammond got hold of revealed that the company was spying on human rights activists on behalf of corporations and the U.S. Government.


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RT Article:

Stratfor hacker Jeremy Hammond sentenced to ten years in jail


Posted November 15, edited November 16.

[Image: 2013-05-29-hammon_620x412.si.jpg]

Internet activist Jeremy Hammond who pleaded guilty to hacking servers of the private intelligence company Statfor and leaking its information to anti-secrecy site, WikiLeaks, was sentenced to ten years in jail on Friday, November 15.

The release of internal emails belonging to Strategic Forecasting Inc. or Stratfor, has become one of the most successful operations ever conducted by the hacktivist group, Anonymous, which Hammond admitted to being part of. A trove of emails attributed to Stratfor executives suggested that the private company, which employs many former officials from the CIA and other government agencies, kept close ties with the security apparatus.

In particular, the emails published by WikiLeaks suggested that Stratfor was hired by private companies and government agencies alike to monitor political protesters and activists, including members of Occupy Wall Street and People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA).

In addition to bringing attention to domestic civil liberties issues, the emails also suggested that numerous Pakistani officials knew the whereabouts of Osama bin Laden prior to the US raid on the Abbottabad complex, and that Russia was able to compromise the unmanned aerial vehicles Israel sold to Georgia prior to the 2008 war.

After pleading guilty during the trial, Hammond released a statement admitting that he also worked with the activist group, Anonymous, to hack into other websites, including those of the military, private intelligence suppliers, law enforcement agencies, information security firms, and more.

“I did this because I believe people have the right to know what government and corporations are doing behind closed doors. I did what I believe is right,” he wrote in his statement.

Read more here....
11-16-2013 02:22 PM
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darkhorse Offline
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RE: Responses to Jeremy Hammond Sentencing (Lawyer & media)
Response by 'Wired':

Anonymous Hacktivist Jeremy Hammond Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison


By Kevin Poulsen, 15 November, 2013, 12:21pm

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.

The 28-year-old Chicagoan pleaded guilty earlier this year to hacking the servers of Strategic Forecasting, Inc., where he wiped out files and databases and stole 5 million private email messages and 60,000 customer credit card numbers. The emails went to WikiLeaks, while the credit cards were used by Anonymous to rack up $700,000 in fraudulent donations to non-profit groups.

Hammond’s lawyers, armed with an internet petition and over 250 letters of support, had sought a sentence of 20 months time-served, positioning Hammond as a whistleblower working to expose wrongdoing at private contractors tied to law enforcement and intelligence agencies.

“I targeted law enforcement systems because of the racism and inequality with which the criminal law is enforced,” Hammond told U.S. District Judge Loretta Preska, reading from a statement that’s now been posted online.

“I targeted the manufacturers and distributors of military and police equipment who profit from weaponry used to advance U.S. political and economic interests abroad and to repress people at home. I targeted information security firms because they work in secret to protect government and corporate interests at the expense of individual rights, undermining and discrediting activists, journalists and other truth seekers, and spreading disinformation.”

Stratfor was primarily in the business of selling private geopolitical intelligence reports from around the world to subscribers, including companies, journalists and private individuals. But the emails taken by Hammond showed Stratfor was engaged in some ickier practices, including tracking the public movements of activists fighting Dow Chemical over the 1984 Union Carbide gas leak in Bhopal, India.

“Jeremy saw working with Anonymous and Antisec as an opportunity to be like Chelsea Manning – to do his part to access information that needed to be shared with the people,” wrote defense attorneys Susan Kellman and Sarah Kinstler in a court filing earlier this month.

Prosecutors noted that Hammond had already been given a reduced sentence once before, in 2006, when he received two years in prison for hacking a right-wing group’s website and stealing credit card numbers.

“Hammond is a computer hacking recidivist who … went on to engage in a massive hacking spree during which he caused harm to numerous businesses, individuals, and governments, resulting in losses of between $1 million and $2.5 million, and threatened the safety of the public at large, especially law enforcement officers and their families,” the government wrote in a sentencing memorandum.

Hammond has a long history of liberal activism and direct action, including work for the anti-war group Food Not Bombs.

His other hacking targets included the FBI’s Virtual Academy; the Arizona Department of Public Safety; Brooks-Jeffrey Marketing, Inc.; Special Forces Gear; Vanguard Defense Industries; the Jefferson County, Alabama Sheriff’s Office; the Boston Police Patrolmen’s Association; and Combined Systems, Inc.

Hammond was undone by his comrade-in-arms, Hector Xavier Monsegur, aka “Sabu,” a former computer security consultant and the ersatz leader of the Lulzsec hacking team.

Monsegur secretly turned informant after the FBI tracked him down in May 2011, and he became an agent provocateur, publicly cheerleading for hack attacks against private security contractors and law enforcement agencies. In this way he ensnared Hammond and the other Stratfor hackers, and even got them to transfer their stolen material to an FBI-controlled server.

With his prior hacking conviction and the high financial losses, Hammond’s guilty plea would have carried a sentence of 12.5 to 15.5 years under federal sentencing guidelines. But under the terms of his plea agreement, he pleaded guilty to a single charge that has a 10 year maximum by statute. With good behavior and credit for the time he’s spent in custody, he’ll be released in September 2021.

Updated 13:50 EDT to quote from Hammond’s statement.

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11-16-2013 06:32 PM
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