Threat Management

With cyberstalking, alleged Anonymous member now faces 44 charges

After being charged in a superseding indictment with several counts of cyberstalking, a Texas man and alleged member of hacktivist collective Anonymous could face a maximum prison sentence of 440 years.

The indictment, filed Tuesday in the U.S. District Court Southern District of Texas, charges 27-year-old Fidel Salinas with intent to harass and intimidate a female victim, on top of previous charges related to hacking attempts against county, school and newspaper organizations.

Salinas allegedly sent repeated emails to the female victim, made attempts to gain unauthorized access to her website, sent communications via a contact form on her website, and opened user accounts on her website without consent, according to the indictment.

From Dec. 23, 2011, to Dec. 29, 2011, Salinas, “with the intent to harass or intimidate another person, namely, victim Y.V., knowingly and intentionally conspired and agreed with other person or persons to use an interactive computer service or any other facility of interstate or foreign commerce, namely, the Internet, to engage in a course of conduct that causes, attempts to cause, or would be reasonably expected to cause substantial emotional distress to Y.V.,” according to the indictment.

The FBI arrested Salinas in September 2013 following a two-year investigation.

Between 2011 and 2012, Salinas allegedly caused more than $10,000 in damages to the Hidalgo County website after making more than 14,000 hacking attempts in a bid to access its administration management page. Salinas is also charged with hacking attempts against La Joya Independent School District and The Monitor newspaper.

If convicted, Salinas faces a maximum prison sentence of 10 years for each of the 44 charges against him.

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