Jennifer Lawrence, Kate Upton and the other victims of a celebrity nude hacking scandal aren’t looking for money from the hacker but prosecutors are fighting hard for him to serve a harsh prison sentence.
On August 22, prosecutors filed court documents in George Garofano’s criminal case, after he recently reached a plea deal, arguing the man should serve serious jail time for his crimes, despite his pleas for a short sentence.
According to court documents obtained by The Blast, prosecutors are demanding the judge sentence Garofano to 10-16 months in prison, followed by supervised release and community service. Prosecutors say they do not want to impose a fine on Garofano — aside from a $100 “mandatory special assessment” — due to his limited financial resources.
In addition, the documents state that none of the victims — which include Lawrence, Upton, Kirsten Dunst and more — have come forward requesting monetary restitution from Garofano.
The prosecutors alleged that during a prolonged period of more than 18 months, Garofano illegally hacked into the private iCloud accounts of over 240 victims including celebrities. He then traded and possibly sold the private photos and information he obtained.
They call the offense a “serious one” and point out that he “illegally hacked into his victims’ online accounts, invaded their privacy, and stole their personal information, including private and intimate photos.” They explain in many cases, these photos were “nude and intimate that no one else was meant see.”
“Although Mr. Garofano engaged in the offense by hiding behind a computer, his actions essentially amounted to breaking into 240 homes, searching through his victims’ closets and drawers, and stealing their personal belongings,” prosecutors claim.
Prosecutors say while Garofano can apologize and express remorse for his actions he “cannot put the proverbial genie back in the bottle.”
Back in April, the 26-year-old Garofano pleaded guilty to hacking over 240 iCloud accounts. Garofano was accused of gaining access by orchestrating a phishing scheme with other people to obtain the password and usernames for the accounts.
The hackers stole private photos and information from the iCloud accounts and posted the material on Reddit.
Garofano’s attorney claimed his client only played a small role in the scheme and was not the mastermind behind the hacking.
He was one of four individuals charged over the 2014 “Celebgate” (also known to some as The Fappening) and he pleaded guilty to one count of unauthorized access to a protected computer to obtain information.
He was released on $50,000 bond while awaiting sentencing, which will go down later this month.