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Deric Lostutter, the 26-year-old hacker who helped expose the rape of a teenage girl in Steubenville, Ohio, could spend as much as five times longer in jail than the two high school football players responsible, reports Tech Worm.
The Steubenville rape case garnered widespread national attention in 2013, after it emerged that there had been a room full of witnesses who not only didn’t report the crime, but posted photos and videos on social media mocking the victim. Lostutter, a former member of the hacking group Anonymous, was responsible for making the incident public, posting a video which outed the perpetrators on the football team’s fan page.
As Mother Jones notes, another hacker going by the name of Batcat has since publicly taken credit for the hack of the football team’s website. However, Lostutter has claimed he was responsible for obtaining photos, screenshots and evidence related to the case, appearing on CNN in 2013 wearing a Guy Fawkes mask.
16-year-olds Ma’lik Richmond and Trent Mays were both convicted of rape in the initial case, sentenced to between one and two years in juvenile detention, but Lostutter could now face up 10-years in prison for methods used to obtain evidence against them. Lostutter is being investigated by the FBI, which raided his home last April with a search warrant that claims that he may have committed federal crimes including “identity theft, attempt and conspiracy,” “aggravated identity theft” and “computer crimes.”
If indicted, a number of questions will likely be asked, including whether a 10-year sentence is appropriate for Lostutter’s crimes, compared to the 1-year sentence for the rape he exposed. The laws concerning hacking have come under the spotlight recently, with President Obama announcing plans to revise the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act in January this year.
Author Kyle Ellison, ESET