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Hackers Take Over U.S. Government Website in Retaliation for Death of Aaron Swartz

The hacker-activist group Anonymous says it  hijacked the website of the U.S. Sentencing Commission to avenge the death of  Aaron Swartz, an Internet activist who committed suicide on January  11.

The website of the commission, an independent  agency of the judicial branch, was taken over early Saturday.

Hackers replaced the homescreen with a  message warning that when Swartz killed himself two weeks ago ‘a line was  crossed.’

Anonymous  say they’ve infiltrated several government computer systems and copied secret  information that they now threaten to make public.

This is the moment Swartz was caught illegally downloading academic journals. The 26-year-old killed himself on January 11 after his friends and family say he was bullied by prosecutors

The message on the sentencing website partly  read:

‘Citizens of the world,  Anonymous has observed for some time now the trajectory of justice in the United  States with growing concern.

‘We have marked the departure of this system  from the noble ideals in which it was born and enshrined.

‘We have seen the erosion of due process, the  dilution of constitutional rights, the usurpation of the rightful authority of  courts by the “discretion” or prosecutors.

‘We have seen how the law is wielded less and  less to uphold justice, and more and more to exercise control, authority and  power in the interests of oppression or personal gain.’

Family and friends of Swartz, who helped  create Reddit and RSS, say he killed himself after he was hounded by federal  prosecutors.

Officials say he helped post millions of court  documents for free online and that he illegally downloaded millions of academic  articles from an online clearinghouse.

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Posted by on January 26, 2013. Filed under NY News,Slider. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.