Just months before he was to be released from federal prison where he is serving time for hacking intelligence firm Statfor and releasing information to WikiLeaks , activist and hacker Jeremy Hammond, was found to be in contempt of court for failing to answer questions before a grand jury in the Eastern District of Virginia (EDVA).
Hammond pleaded guilty in May 2013 to exposing millions of emails in the infamous December 2011 hack of Austin, Texas-based Stratfor, which also included the theft of 60,000 credit card numbers from clients that the hackers purportedly used to make $700,000 worth of donations to charities.
I knew then that my actions could land me behind bars, yet I fought on anyway; after a dozen arrests and even a prior federal prison sentence for hacking, I chose once again to use my computer skills to attack the systems of the rich and powerful as part of the Anonymous federal case I am doing time for today,” Hammond said in a statement expressing outrage at the contempt charges so close to his scheduled release from prison. “When I pled guilty, I took responsibility for my actions and my actions alone. I never agreed to be debriefed or testify in any way, unlike the government’s informant Hector Monsegur, aka Sabu,” who only received a year of probation.
“In my case, the government, through its informant, Sabu, instigated numerous hacks, asking me to break into governments and companies all over the world,” Hammond said. “Nearly a decade later, this misconduct remains ignored. The NSA continues to surveil everyone and launch cyberattacks” while “Chelsea Manning and I are doing hard time in this dump for the “crime” of refusing to allow our spirits to break, after ‘serving’ our sentences for exposing government and corporate corruption.”