NBC News reports that a computer science student pleaded guilty today to three counts of extortion and one count of unauthorized access into Miss Teen USA and other young women’s computers. Charges were brought against the hacker because he allegedly threatened to post nude photographs of the women online.
The 19-year-old Jared James Abrahams of Temecula, California, was released on bond until his sentencing, which is scheduled for March 17th, 2014. At the hearing, Abrahams is expected to enter a guilty plea, defense attorney Alan Eisner said. The teenager faces possible imprisonment of up to 11 years and fines amounting to $1 million.
Abrahams is alleged to have hacked into Cassidy Wolf’s computer as well as that of of seven other women from various states and counties, authorities said. Miss Cassidy Wolf is the current Miss Teen USA. For four years she attended the same school as Abrahams in Temecula, just southeast of Los Angeles, and graduated in 2012.
A plea statement filed last month gives details from last year until June of this year. The computer science student hacked into computers, social media accounts, and emails accounts belonging to the victims. He was then able to control webcams and surreptitiously photograph the unsuspecting women, the FBI reported. Abraham was said to have sent anonymous emails to the victims, informing them that he was in possession of their nude photos and would publish them online if they failed to send him additional pictures or undress for him. He promised to destroy the images only if they complied with his demands.
Wolf did not comply with Abraham’s demands and called the investigators after receiving threatening emails containing her nude photos. However, according to police, at least two of the other victims went along with his demands.
A Florida man accused of employing similar tactics was sentenced to ten years in prison for hacking into Scarlett Johansson and Christina Aguilera’s online accounts, and publicly revealing their nude photos.
(main photo via YouTube.com)