Summary: The Chicago hacker who allegedly stole celebrity nudes from their private accounts has pled guilty to the crime.
On Tuesday, a self-described computer nerd pled guilty to his part in Celebgate, a hacking scandal that resulted in the nude photographs of stars such as Jennifer Lawrence and Kate Upton being released online.
Edward Majerczyk of Chicago admitted to his role in the hacking. He pled guilty to one count of unauthorized access to a protected computer to obtain information, and he is expected to serve a nine month sentence starting in January, the Chicago Tribune stated.
Majerczyk was on trial for alleging using a phishing scheme from 2013 to 2014 to gain access to over 300 email accounts, 30 of them belonging to celebrities. According to his plea agreement, he sent emails to victims pretending to be internet service providers. He would request passwords and user names, and from there, he would use that information to access their Gmail or Apple iCloud accounts.
Majerczyk played a part in Celebgate, but there were other hackers who he did not know who were also involved and are awaiting prosecution. Overall, about 100 celebrities got their photos stolen, including Kirsten Dunst and Detroit Tigers pitcher Justin Verlander. Those photos were then uploaded online on sites such as Reddit or 4Chan.
The investigation on who leaked the celebrity nudes that Majerczyk had stolen is still pending, according to the U.S. attorney’s office in Los Angeles.
Lawrence, whose photos were involved in Celebgate, said she was the victim of a “sex crime.”
In court, Majerczyk said he targeted celebrities using a phishing scheme before he went through their personal information and downloaded private photographs. His attorney Thomas Needham said there was no proof that his client wanted to sell of distribute that information. Needham said the downloads were for his own personal enjoyment.
Source: Chicago Tribune
Photo courtesy of EW
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