Barret Brown Released All Charges Dropped
In early march of 2012, activist and journalist Barret Brown, had his house raided and was arrested by the FBI. As of March 5, 2014 Barret Brown has been acquitted of all charges related to the Strarfor dump.
Barret Brown had 11 charges brought up against him for an alleged hack. Barret Brown was begin brought up on a charge for allegedly hacking Stratfor Global Intelligence. Barret Brown had hyperlinked a document to a pastebin that contained all of the Stratfor Global Intelligence documents. Documents contained 860,000 e-mail addresses for Stratfor subscribers and 60,000 credit card details. Among other charges Brown was alleged to have threatening an FBI agent and was brought up for obstruction of justice. While Brown has had all Statrfor charges dropped, Brown could still face up to 70 years in federal prison for uncovering online surveillance programs.In the two trials scheduled on April 28 and May 19, Brown will be seen answering 17 charges brought up against him for his work.
While Brown has been behind bars for over a year, he could still face large amounts of jail time for his journalist work. In the YouTube video below, Brown can be seen having his house raided and begin arrested by the FBI while on TinyChat.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation supporting Barret Brown noted
“We are relieved that federal prosecutors have decided to drop these charges against Barrett Brown. In prosecuting Brown, the government sought to criminalize a routine practice of journalism—linking to external sources—which is a textbook violation of free speech protected by the First Amendment. Although this motion is good news for Brown, the unnecessary and unwarranted prosecution has already done much damage; not only has it harmed Brown, the prosecution—and the threat of prosecution it raised for all journalists—has chilled speech on the Internet. We hope that this dismissal of charges indicates a change in the Department of Justice priorities. If not, we will be ready to step in and defend free speech.”– EFF
Before Barret Browns arrest, Brown ran an operation called, Project PM, a project engaging in issues relating to official leaks and the work of the hacking collective Anonymous. While Journalist continue uncovering the truth about the U.S. Governments surveillance programs, activists and journalist like Barret Brown will continue to be targets.