Scarlett Johansson hacker set for sentencing
The Florida man who hacked the email accounts of several Hollywood starlets is set to be sentenced Monday in a Los Angeles federal court.
Christopher Chaney, 35, pleaded guilty in March to nine felony counts, including unauthorized access and damage to protected computers, wiretapping and fraud. He faces up to 60 years in prison for his cyber stalking and harassment, according to reports.
From November 2010 to October 2011, Chaney illegally accessed the email accounts of dozens of other celebrities.
Among the victims were Christina Aguilera, Mila Kunis and Scarlett Johansson – the later, having nude photos meant for her now ex-husband Ryan Reynolds stolen and published online. The women agreed to be identified in the case to bring awareness to the acts carried out by Chaney.
Following an 11-month police investigation dubbed “Operation Hackerazzi,” Chaney initially pleaded innocent in November 2011 after being charged in a 26-count indictment.
Originally facing up to 121 years in prison, Chaney's attorneys struck a deal in March that halved the prison time if he pleaded guilty to nine counts.
Chaney hacked celebrities' emails by resetting their accounts, and using publicly available information to answer security questions. He then changed the account settings so that all of their emails would be forwarded to him. Personal information, such as business contracts, photos, driver's license information and other sensitive data, was accessed in the incidents.
The Associated Press reported that some of Chaney's victims were not public figures, and that one in fact, first met the man online when she was 13 years old, in 1999.
“She began talking with a girl named ‘Jessica' that later turned out to actually be Chaney,” the article said.
Though he could face up to 60 years in prison, federal prosecutors have recommended a six-year sentence for Chaney, and that he pay about $66,000 to Johansson and a $150,000 fine.
UPDATE: U.S. District Judge S. James Otero sentenced Chaney Monday in a Los Angeles federal court to 10 years in prison.