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Cybercrime Marketplace Mastermind Faces 18 Years In Prison

samzenpus posted about 4 months ago | from the doing-the-time dept.

Crime 59

wiredmikey writes "A Ukrainian national, Roman Vega, who pleaded guilty in 2009 to creating a popular online marketplace for selling stolen financial account data has been sentenced to 18 years in prison. Called one of the world's 'most prolific cybercriminals' by the Department of Justice, Vega, 49, will serve significant time in prison for his role in co-founding the notorious website CarderPlanet. In the early 2000s, Vega co-founded and became a high-ranking administrator of the notorious website, which became one of the first and busiest online marketplaces for the sale of stolen financial information, computer hacking services and money laundering. At its height, CarderPlanet had more than 6,000 members and had a hierarchical leadership structure that borrowed its leadership titles from La Cosa Nostra, US authorities said."

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59 comments

Considering the damages (4, Interesting)

FlyHelicopters (1540845) | about 4 months ago | (#45675935)

Frankly, considering the economic damage he did, the thousands (if not millions) of people he screwed over and caused pain and suffering to, the time wasted to clean up his mess...

18 years is quite small, I'd have no problem with executing him. If people who commit crimes behind computer keyboards were actually punished more often, we might have less of it. As it is, the fraud and abuse online are really more like the wild west than the 21st century.

Re:Considering the damages (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45676011)

It's just a shame only a few villains like this ever get prosecuted, while the ones who REALLY screw millions of people over on a daily basis get moved to even cushier new jobs instead after the people they screwed over bail them out.

Re:Considering the damages (5, Insightful)

DavidClarkeHR (2769805) | about 4 months ago | (#45676013)

Frankly, considering the economic damage he did, the thousands (if not millions) of people he screwed over and caused pain and suffering to, the time wasted to clean up his mess...

18 years is quite small, I'd have no problem with executing him. If people who commit crimes behind computer keyboards were actually punished more often, we might have less of it. As it is, the fraud and abuse online are really more like the wild west than the 21st century.

Economic damage is not a good way to assess penalties. Compare and contrast with Aaron Swartz, Jamie Thomas-Rasset, Kevin Mitnick ...

No, this guy needs to go away because he was breaking the law - not because of how much he broke it.

Re:Considering the damages (2, Insightful)

girlintraining (1395911) | about 4 months ago | (#45676175)

No, this guy needs to go away because he was breaking the law - not because of how much he broke it.

No, he needs to go away because he didn't give the government it's cut of the action. That's how Wall Street can trigger a decade-long economic recession and nobody goes to jail, but one guy running a website faces infinity years in the electric chair while being anally abused by goats.

This has nothing to do with how little or much he broke the law -- it's about setting an example: Don't steal. The government hates competition.

Re:Considering the damages (1)

cascadingstylesheet (140919) | about 4 months ago | (#45678755)

That's how Wall Street can trigger a decade-long economic recession

We're having a (half)-decade long recession because government responded to a recession by opening the floodgates of spending.

Just like in the 1930s. That's how you turn a recession into a long-running malaise. We have historical experience with this.

Re:Considering the damages (5, Insightful)

dj245 (732906) | about 4 months ago | (#45676361)

Frankly, considering the economic damage he did, the thousands (if not millions) of people he screwed over and caused pain and suffering to, the time wasted to clean up his mess...

18 years is quite small, I'd have no problem with executing him. If people who commit crimes behind computer keyboards were actually punished more often, we might have less of it. As it is, the fraud and abuse online are really more like the wild west than the 21st century.

Economic damage is not a good way to assess penalties. Compare and contrast with Aaron Swartz, Jamie Thomas-Rasset, Kevin Mitnick ... No, this guy needs to go away because he was breaking the law - not because of how much he broke it.

The parent poster is advocating a more severe sentence because of the total amount of suffering caused. If I punch someone in the face, that's assault, but the damage is limited to 1 person and is relatively minor. It is also in most cases not a permanent cause of pain and suffering. The punishment is light.

If I intentionally and maliciously gave someone a papercut, that is assault too. But the amount of suffering is pretty low. In all likelihood you would have a tough time getting a court to hear your case even.

But what if I ran around intentionally and maliciously giving people papercuts? What if I inflicted papercuts on millions of people? For each person, the damage is minor. In aggregate though, it is a lot of pain and suffering.

Committing thousands or millions of small crimes used to be hard. Now with the internet and computers, it is easy. It seems like you are arguing that multiple counts of the same crime shouldn't stack. In cases where someone hacks 1 company 1000 times or using 100 different methods, maybe you have a point. Sometimes prosecuters go a little crazy. But multiple crimes should stack if there are multiple victims who all suffered.

Re:Considering the damages (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45676603)

He didn't actually commit fraud (I'll presume, as it sounds like he ran a forum, even though it was with intent to assist people in communicating who were committing fraud, which is completely different than actually defrauding people). He gave people a place to communicate (freedom of speech) and associate (also a right, freedom of association). Unfortunately these rights have been violated due to bad surprise court decisions. They have comprised the rights of people who might otherwise be able to object and get the laws changed. That is the risk of preventing ex-cons from associating or for that matter any group of people who society (or an elite) object. Would you think it right to shut down a group of pot-smokers? Because thats exactly what your doing if you arrest them. Your taking away there freedom (even after release from prison). Or what about a group of protesters fighting for gay rights? The same thing could applied to them (its illegal to have gay sex).

Re:Considering the damages (1)

hazah (807503) | about 4 months ago | (#45676855)

Committing thousands or millions of small crimes used to be hard. Now with the internet and computers, it is easy. It seems like you are arguing that multiple counts of the same crime shouldn't stack.

No. They should not. At least not proportionally. Because computers are the kind of tools that can amplify an event exponentially into oblivion, it makes no sense. Human lifetimes are finite, and we serve absolutely no-one by indulging ourselves in locking up non-violent criminals away for eternity. That idea is simply frightning from a civilized stand point.

Re:Considering the damages (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45676973)

No. They should not. At least not proportionally. Because computers are the kind of tools that can amplify an event exponentially into oblivion, it makes no sense. Human lifetimes are finite, and we serve absolutely no-one by indulging ourselves in locking up non-violent criminals away for eternity. That idea is simply frightning from a civilized stand point.

I believe it's called setting an example to discourage others.

Re:Considering the damages (1)

hazah (807503) | about 4 months ago | (#45677273)

Which is a style of dicipline that is only ever applicable to children. What this is is despicable, and no amount of rationalization will ever justify it. Blatant abuse of power for petty, self-serving gains.

Re:Considering the damages (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45690573)

Which is a style of dicipline that is only ever applicable to children. What this is is despicable, and no amount of rationalization will ever justify it. Blatant abuse of power for petty, self-serving gains.

Hurrah for common sense!

Re:Considering the damages (1)

FlyHelicopters (1540845) | about 4 months ago | (#45677521)

If you don't like my idea, what is your solution?

You can't fine the man enough money, he can't pay it. Even if you took all his current money and gave it to his victims, it would be pennies on the dollar.

What then, a slap on the wrist? Heck, if I could figure out how to steal $10 million dollars in a non-violent way and you'd only want to send me to jail for 6 months, sign me up.

Which of course is exactly why we don't do that, people would take that risk in huge numbers.

I don't suggest locking him up forever, I suggest executing him. He has caused more harm to society than he can ever repay, he clearly is beyond redemption, he knew what he was doing and didn't care.

So shoot him in the head and move on with life.

Re:Considering the damages (1)

RobertLTux (260313) | about 4 months ago | (#45680109)

Actually a very good major reform to the prison system would be

1 turn most Juvie Halls into Boarding Schools (and limit the kids exposure to the Hard Cases)
2 have most inmates WORK (give them a decent wage minus expenses of course)
3 give inmates (not on the Jason Vorhees level) Good Behavior credit for taking education courses.
4 if somebody earns N LIFE sentences then take measures to ensure he/she DOES NOT GET OUT
5 in states with Capital Punishment ensure that said sentence is carried out BEFORE the Convict dies of Old Age
(oh and btw if as a LEO or Agent of the Court you tamper with or hide evidence that would free a person eligible for Death Row then you get A 20-25 years no parole (if the person has not been executed) B your own ticket to Death Row)

Re:Considering the damages (1)

hazah (807503) | about 4 months ago | (#45683887)

How fucking convinent for you to dismiss someone's entire life based on a single action. Truth be told it's far simpler to shoot YOU in the head and move on, because it'll have far less publicity. If you're that quick to line them up, then I'd definately line you up right with them for your shitty attitude towards life, especially now that you've shown how little you think of it.

Re:Considering the damages (1)

FlyHelicopters (1540845) | about 4 months ago | (#45684337)

You're welcome to your opinion...

Millions and millions of people go around all day, every day, and don't kill anyone. If someone goes out and murders someone in cold blood for no reason, then frankly we'd all be better off without them on Earth.

Re:Considering the damages (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45686189)

How fucking convinent for you to dismiss someone's entire life based on a single action.

That "single action" cost potentially millions of man hours. One life time is around 700,000 man hours. Do you really think somebody doing a single action, like killing a few people, should not face major consequences? Most people manage to avoid killing people. Likewise they can and should manage avoiding large scale theft that costs millions of man hours. Personally, I wouldn't execute them, just lock them and throw away the key, but the idea that somebody should get off lightly because they used a powerful tool while still doing the same amount of damage is just silly.

Re:Considering the damages (1)

tlhIngan (30335) | about 4 months ago | (#45681405)

No. They should not. At least not proportionally. Because computers are the kind of tools that can amplify an event exponentially into oblivion, it makes no sense. Human lifetimes are finite, and we serve absolutely no-one by indulging ourselves in locking up non-violent criminals away for eternity. That idea is simply frightning from a civilized stand point.

In other words, it's better to steal $1 from 1,000,000 people than to steal $1,000,000 from one person, because if you do the former with a computer, you get off scot-free, while if you do the latter, you'd be doing hard time pretty damn quickly.

In fact, that's exactly how companies operate these days - if they need more profit, they'll intentionally mis-bill you $1 or so and hope you don't call it in. Do it over a year and it's several million dollars more for the CEO's new yacht.

Then again, it's the same reasoning for not punishing people for spamming - it only costs a fraction of a penny to everyone to "just delete it", yet incurs very real costs (over all spam you receive, and over and above the added server storage and computation for filters and potentially lost false positives).

Or telemarketing - it only costs you a few seconds to say "no thanks" and hang up.

There are plenty of things that don't cost any one individual a whole lot, but do incur societal costs as a whole.

Re:Considering the damages (1)

FlyHelicopters (1540845) | about 4 months ago | (#45677869)

The parent poster is advocating a more severe sentence because of the total amount of suffering caused. If I punch someone in the face, that's assault, but the damage is limited to 1 person and is relatively minor. It is also in most cases not a permanent cause of pain and suffering. The punishment is light.

This, exactly...

If I go and punch one person, the crime is real, but not deserving of 18 years in prison. If I go around and punch 1,000 people, 10 every day, frankly I'm beyond help at that point and need to be put down like the rabid dog I would be... if I did such a thing.

Someone who goes around and steals $100 each from 100,000 people is a sociopath, human garbage, there just isn't anything you can do for such a person, clearly they care nothing for the rules of society.

Re:Considering the damages (1)

rtb61 (674572) | about 4 months ago | (#45678147)

That really does make a lot of sense. Proportional rehabilitation based upon each crime committed and each crime as recorded against each victim. So the appropriate rehabilitation and isolation to prevent recurrence as suited to each individual criminal act. Then each act totalled and to be served concurrently with perhaps say a nominal 10% reduction in each consecutive sentence ie instead of 100% on the next 90% then 81% then 72.9% etc so no victim is ignored apart and ridiculous imprisonment periods exceeding hundreds of years are somewhat avoided. Each and every victim should be entitled to justice under the law.

Re:Considering the damages (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45676029)

I agree!
Anyone else think it's ironic there is an ad for "Coin" the 1 card to hold all your credit card info on?
I reported their YouTube video for teaching people its okay to store pictures of their credit cards along with the info from the magnetic strip on a smartphone.

Who created the damages in the frist place ? (2)

Taco Cowboy (5327) | about 4 months ago | (#45676385)

When we open a bank account, we place our trust to that bank, and that bank has the responsibility to protect our account with it.

When we shop at a store with a credit card, we place our trust on the integrity of the store and also that of the credit card company (with the bank issuing that credit card).

And if we do not lose our credit cards, but the information regarding our cards was stolen somewhere , who should we blame ?

Do we blame the one who stole the information or the one who were so fucking careless with the sensitive information in the first place ?

Let us understand this one thing - if you really want to blame, blame those institutions that has betrayed our trust.

The hackers are only exploiting the opportunities left OPENED by those fuckers who were so careless.

If ever there were damages, stop blaming the guy who operated a website - blame those motherfucking banks and credit card companies !

Re:Who created the damages in the frist place ? (2)

Suomi-Poika (453539) | about 4 months ago | (#45676525)

Yes, I find this quite strange case indeed. Roman Vega was arrested in 2003. He has been incarcerated in USA since then. He is a Ukrainian citizen. He was accused of credit card theft and had to wait TEN YEARS to get his conviction. Now, since he is a first timer, and his ten years in jail must be counted in - shouldn't he be freed immediately? He is not a terrorist and the pre-2003 systems his hackers were exploiting were literally stone-age systems without any double or triple verification procedures.

Naturally the biggest question is that if this guy is only a operator of cybercrime www-site in Ukraine then what the hell he is doing in USA? Terrorism and murder I would understand but credit card crimes committed in the 90s and early 00s simply is an unjustified reason to kidnap foreign citizens and make them wait ten years to get their conviction. If your payment systems are so broken that 3rd world hackers have free reign over them you don't arrest the 3rd world hackers, you repair your payment systems. It would have taken less time and taxpayers' money than send FBI and Secret Service, kidnap this guy, jail him, hold legal processes for ten years and then jail him some more. Sugar on top is: USA has to loan the money to do all this.

Well, perhaps some United States citizen can explain this to me?

Re:Who created the damages in the frist place ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45676613)

Team Amerika World Police.

Re:Who created the damages in the frist place ? (1)

hazah (807503) | about 4 months ago | (#45676869)

MERRICA! FUCK YA! (not an american, but couldn't resist)

Re:Who created the damages in the frist place ? (1)

ApplePy (2703131) | about 4 months ago | (#45676895)

Well, perhaps some United States citizen can explain this to me?

Umm... nope, doesn't make any sense to me either.

All non-Americans seem to think that all Americans are somehow individually responsible for the actions of our government. In truth, we have about as much control over it as you do.

Re:Who created the damages in the frist place ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45677049)

All non-Americans seem to think that all Americans are somehow individually responsible for the actions of our government. In truth, we have about as much control over it as you do.

What a country... Please tell us more about how any non-American can vote for American elections.

Re:Who created the damages in the frist place ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45678633)

That's not possible, but perhaps you could tell me when the last time that a federal-level candidate for office, who was serious about reform, appeared on a ballot? As far as I know, not in my lifetime.

Re:Who created the damages in the frist place ? (2)

FlyHelicopters (1540845) | about 4 months ago | (#45677581)

You're right, we shouldn't blame the criminal, we should blame the banks!!!

Really? So if someone crashes into me because they had too much to drink, I should blame the car company and the beer company and not the idiot drinking and driving?

Re:Who created the damages in the frist place ? (1)

Artifakt (700173) | about 4 months ago | (#45677775)

While I agree we should still blame the criminal, what's wrong with blaming the banks too? Poor security is a real factor in most of these cases, and being neglectful enough of security is negligence, in some cases even criminal negligence. Making promises to safeguard other people's money and then blowing off those promises may rise to the level of fraud. Indeed, the fees charged by those financial institutions are one of the reasons the law should see it as fraud, as the more money a legal entity makes off an action, the higher the standards of negligence and due dilligence generally are. If we would hold a doctor or civil engineer at fault for more than a nursing aide or a technician, why shouldn't we hold a financial institution to a stricter standard than the doctor or engineer?
        If someone crashes into you because they have had too much to drink, AND because a poorly installed guardrail gave way, why should you blame just the driver and not the road constructor? Aren't the multiple actions that caused the crash ALL part of what the law should consider?
   

Re:Who created the damages in the frist place ? (1)

FlyHelicopters (1540845) | about 4 months ago | (#45677857)

Oh, I don't disagree, if the banks were careless with security, then yes, they are responsible too.

I'm just saying that we shouldn't leave the criminal alone who actually did the crime of using the information illegally.

Re:Considering the damages (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45676395)

FWIW, I don't think economic criminals generally are eligible for capital punishment. If they were, Bernie Madoff would be long dead.

Re:Considering the damages (1)

John Bokma (834313) | about 4 months ago | (#45676523)

Would you be able to execute this person yourself? If you answer yes, are you sure you've given the whole executing thing enough thought?

Re:Considering the damages (1)

FlyHelicopters (1540845) | about 4 months ago | (#45677569)

Would you be able to execute this person yourself?

Yes.

Why? Because I'm old enough to understand that some people just need to be put down. We put down rabid dogs, frankly there are humans who are no better.

Do I think that should be done often? No, but there are times and cases when the criminal clearly understands that he/she was committing crimes and hurting people, that he/she was abusing the system for personal gain and didn't care who they hurt.

Such people tend to be sociopaths, they don't care about others, they don't care who they hurt, so long as they can do whatever they want.

My moral views do not prevent me from shooting such a person in the head, frankly we're doing them a favor and doing society a favor.

I know that isn't a widely popular view, many people these days believe that all humans are special and deserve to be bent over backwards for... but I disagree. Some people are winners, some people are losers, and some people are sociopaths who need to be shot in the head.

But don't think that I believe in harsh law and order enforcement, I think the war on drugs is stupid. Most people in jail for using drugs should be let out tomorrow, most drugs should be, at least, decriminalized. 30 year prison sentences are stupid, it costs us all a ton of money, just to warehouse a human, which is more evil than shooting them would be.

------

BTW, do I think I'm wise enough to know all the right answers for this? No, I do not. Do I think I should have the final say? No, I do not. But you asked if I could execute such a person. The answer is yes, I have no moral issues with it, and it would save us all a ton of money by not warehousing him for 18 years, then letting him out with a record that will make honest employment almost impossible and with no useful skills anyway.

Re:Considering the damages (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45679233)

I'm slightly more alarmed by your casual dehumanizations: human beings no better than rabid dogs? Shooting people is doing them a favour? People "need" to be shot in the head? A willingness (rather desire) to kill a human being because it would be financially cheaper than that human being living. Perhaps you should reflect on whether you would be willing to take your own medicine, Mr. Sociopath?

The convoluted thought processes that you employ to avoid cognitive dissonance must be astounding.

Re:Considering the damages (1)

FlyHelicopters (1540845) | about 4 months ago | (#45677981)

BTW, to offer another view point and to point out that I have indeed thought this through:

http://abcnews.go.com/US/charges-texas-father-beat-death-daughters-molester/story?id=16612071 [go.com]

This guy in Texas found a man sexually assualting his 5 year old daughter, and proceeded to beat him to death with his bare hands.

It is considered homicide, but it is lawful in Texas in this situation.

So killing someone else is acceptable, when the right situation exists. We can debate what those situations are. I doubt very many parents would have a problem with beating to death someone who was raping their 5 year old daughter, clearly that is the extreme example.

Beyond that it becomes a series of viewpoints and opinons as to what crimes justify execution.

My personal viewpoint is that anyone who clearly demonstrates a complete lack of interest in respecting the rights of others and has done so either in single crimes such as this (rape, murder, etc.) or in lessor crimes that have been repeated many times (such as robbing banks dozens of times or commiting dozens of acts of assualt or stealing millions of dollars over time from many people).

If you spend years being a criminal and don't care that you're breaking the law, then frankly I have no use for you and you can just go die and be removed from the human gene pool.

BTW, the above being said, a number of things that are currently illegal, I would make legal (or at least make them very minor crimes). Using drugs for example, putting people in jail for years for smoking pot is just stupid beyond belief. Unless of course they do it while driving and hurt people because of it, but that is just poor decision making. If they smoke it at home and hurt no one, I have no interest in getting into their business.

I guess to sum up... if you aren't hurting anyone else and are leaving everyone else alone, then I think you should be able to be left alone. If you're hurting other people, stealing, getting into other people's business, then you are scum. Live and let live.

Re:Considering the damages (1)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about 4 months ago | (#45679187)

BTW, to offer another view point and to point out that I have indeed thought this through:

http://abcnews.go.com/US/charges-texas-father-beat-death-daughters-molester/story?id=16612071 [go.com] [go.com]

This guy in Texas found a man sexually assualting his 5 year old daughter, and proceeded to beat him to death with his bare hands.

And then called an ambulance in a desparate attempt not to let the guy die. Wow. Not sure how many people would've done that.

I really hope the dad has never lost a moment's sleep over what he did.

Re:Considering the damages (1)

FlyHelicopters (1540845) | about 4 months ago | (#45682875)

You have to call an ambulance for legal reasons, and I'm sure he was in shock over the whole thing...

He'll lose much more sleep over seeing his 5 year old raped than over killing the scum who did it.

Re:Considering the damages (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45677009)

Frankly, considering the economic damage he did, the thousands (if not millions) of people he screwed over and caused pain and suffering to, the time wasted to clean up his mess...

What does the President has to do with this story? Please stay on-topic.

Rubbish. He only typed. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45677101)

He typed. What he did was wrong, jail is good. Execution is jumping the shark. If you call for jail for this guy, what about Wall street? Do you slaughter *ALL* the brokers, traders, their families, relations, friends *AND* the shareholders? If you call for execution for a guy behind a keyboard, and Wall street is so much worse, clearly this is what you want.

Re:Considering the damages (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about 4 months ago | (#45677635)

yeah so drive over four persons while drunk and pay 400k for rehab..
but should be executed for essentially fencing stolen goods?

and I don't see how "more often" goes with "let's punish some one dude a lot", it doesn't really average out to that. wire fraud and computers related crime is already punishable with punishments that are way out of proportion compared to traditional crime where the victim loses all his shit AND gets a knife stuck in his stomach.

sure, would be nice if fraudsters got prosecuted more _often_ but that does't mean that it's a good system to execute them..

Re:Considering the damages (1)

FlyHelicopters (1540845) | about 4 months ago | (#45677889)

Drunk driving is a serious problem that a lot of people don't take seriously enough.

If you drink and drive and kill someone, then the problem comes back to, "you chose to drink, while keep the keys, thus you had the choice to avoid it".

Frankly, I think you should have to hand over your keys before a bar serves you a second drink, or maybe we shouldn't have bars. I enjoy a drink or two at home, but I would never go driving and I don't drink to get drunk. I have one or two, then go to bed, like a sane member of society.

Frankly, we need to make it unacceptable to behave in socially unacceptable ways. How to do that is the $64,000 question.

If you harm someone truely by mistake, it is forgiveable. If you harm someone because you're a jackass, then you're dog meat, as far as I'm concerned.

Then again, I was never the type to get into bar fights, I walk away from people who want to get into dick measuring contests, and generally obey the rules of society. People who fail to do all that? Worthless for a civil society.

Re:Considering the damages (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45678207)

You said it yourself; "more often", not necessarily more harsher. It's only money, and mostly only play money. 18 years is enough. You have to leave some scale left for the ones that actually harm people physically.

Re:Considering the damages (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45683499)

You sir are retarded... Yes I said it. You are one of the like minded people that thought that computer fraud is worse than Murder.

Commit Murder... you will be out in 3-6yrs on good behavior...
Commit Computer Fraud... That will be 10yrs without the option of early release.

Do I agree with what he did? Hell no! But punishments need to be in relation to the crime. Murder is quite a bit worse than any computer fraud.

He wasn't the top guy - BFD. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45675941)

Immediately below the Godfather were a number of “Dons,” including the defendant,...

So, the ''Godfather'' is going to set up shop somewhere else.

Business as usual.

notorious indeed (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45675999)

So notorious I've never heard of it and it only had 6000 members.

Let it be known (2)

FuzzNugget (2840687) | about 4 months ago | (#45676499)

If you're going to pillage the bank accounts of thousands (or millions) of people, you gotta do it through deceptive ponzi mortgage schemes and buying off market regulators to make it legal.

Where can I contribute to his defence fund? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45676543)

I think its dumb that they should be going after people who are merely providing a forum to communicate. The citizenry has a right to associate and communicate even if the state feels its illegal. The actions of many of the users doesn't not make it right for the government to shut down said communications. The people using the data to commit fraud is a crime in and of itself so there should be no problem making an arrest if sufficient police work is performed. It's a very bad idea to make policing 'easy' as it compromised the rights and freedoms of 'law abiding' citizens (nobody is law abiding in practice for various reasons mind you).

Re:Where can I contribute to his defence fund? (4, Insightful)

Beerdood (1451859) | about 4 months ago | (#45676661)

"Hey I didn't actually sell financial information, I only helped set up a system that allowed criminals to sell stolen credit card details!"
"Hey I didn't actually molest those children, I only created a forum that let people purchase CP from eachother!"
"Hey I don't own any slaves, I only helped some sellers find some and shipped them across to people willing to buy!"
"Hey I didn't kill those thousands of civilians, I just helped facilitate a deal between an arms dealer and a corrupt dictatorship!"

Yeesh. "merely providing a forum to communicate". It's assholes like you that make the world burn - you damn well know the consequences of the actions of a scheme, a forum set up specifically for selling stolen financial information , but somehow rationalize it away in the name of some libertarianish idea of 'all free speech should be allowed' because you're actually facilitating in the crime yourself!

Re:Where can I contribute to his defence fund? (0)

hazah (807503) | about 4 months ago | (#45676893)

Any tool can be used for evil. That's the problem. Not your fairytales about intent, of which you have no fucking clue of. You know so much, why the fuck aren't you solving all of our problems, genius?

Re:Where can I contribute to his defence fund? (1)

hazah (807503) | about 4 months ago | (#45677307)

Mod is Curious. My main argument is that arguing about intent is futile, as this will amount to thought crime if taken to its logical conclusion. Is that really not worth pondering? (At least, it would be nice to know why not -- if this is truly overrated.)

Re:Where can I contribute to his defence fund? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45678699)

I haven't researched what his intent was when creating the site, but the facts are these:

1. The site was used to commit large volumes of fraudulent, illegal activity.
2. The operators of the site were fully aware the site was being used for fraud.
3. The operators of the site made no effort to stop this - and more importantly, approved of and facilitated the illegal activity.
4. This continued for many years with lots of evidence left behind to verify that is what happened.

Your calling this "thoughtcrime" is a straw man fallacy and has no validity.

Re:Where can I contribute to his defence fund? (1)

hazah (807503) | about 4 months ago | (#45683813)

I'm actually responding to the points made in the parent post to which I originally replied. The four quotes he postulated are terrible examples of how to approach the subject. I rejected his notions based on his arguments. At no point am I making a strawman in regards to the article, because frankly, my question would be off topic at best in that case. But being human, I'm still curious.

Re:Where can I contribute to his defence fund? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45681847)

in the name of some libertarianish idea of 'all free speech should be allowed'

I'm glad you added the "-ish". Free speech should be allowed, but most libertarians will agree that being an accessory to fraud should still be prosecuted.

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Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45679915)

and another user goes to prison for using windblows ...

We have a new record holder! (1)

neorush (1103917) | about 4 months ago | (#45680063)

I watched an episode once of American Greed about Max Butler [wikipedia.org] who had the longest prison sentence for hacking in history (13 years). In my opinion he had no remorse for what he did. He truly believed he didn't really hurt anyone. In his interview he was basically like, "when they raided me, I thought they were just picking up bricks (encrypted hard drives) but apparently the FBI has some really smart guys". He seemed more remorseful with the fact that he lost to the FBI than anything else. This guy probably deserved the sentence and then some. Also as a note, in the program they eluded to the fact that they needed to catch him with his machine running to decrypt everything....I'm sure the keys were in memory.
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