An activist tied to the hacking group Anonymous was sentenced to five years in prison on charges of threatening an FBI agent and spreading stolen data.
The Business Insider reports that Barrett Brown, who had faced more than 100 years behind bars, read from a lengthy statement before sentencing, saying he broke the law to uncover unlawful government activity.
“If I criticize the government for breaking the law, but then break the law myself in an effort to reveal their wrongdoing, I should expect to be punished just I’ve called for the criminals at government-linked firms… to be punished,” he said. “When we start fighting crime by any means necessary, we become guilty of the same hypocrisy as law enforcement agencies throughout history that break the rules to get the villains, and so become villains themselves.”
Brown was arrested in 2012 after threatening an FBI agent in a YouTube video.
He pledged to “ruin his life and look into his (expletive) kids.”
Brown also was charged with sharing information hacked from defense contractor Stratfor, Business Insider wrote.