A Seattle man was arrested on federal charges Friday for attempting to extort Leagle.com and several other media companies after the companies refusing to remove court documents involving him from their site.
On December 30, 2014, Kamyar Jahanrakhshan, reportedly contacted Leagle.com requesting that the company remove a link to the documents, claiming he was a plaintiff in the case and the posting was tarnishing his reputation as well as violating his privacy, according to a July 28, 2017, Justice Department press release.
Jahanrakhshan then sent multiple requests between December 30, 2014 and January 16, 2015 to the publication offering to pay for the removal of the documents to no avail before claiming that he had met with a group of hackers who were willing to launch a DDoS attacks against the organization unless the demands were met.
On January 25, 2015 the company was hit with a large amount of IP traffic that didn’t subside until after the company removed the court document. Similar attacks, some of which included bomb threats, were carried out on Fairfax Media5, The Metro News, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, and Canada.com.
Jahanrakhshan faces five years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine if charged.