The man who played a role in the hacking of nude photos Jennifer Lawrence, Kate Upton, and other celebrities is pleading with a judge for a short prison sentence, claiming he has already suffered enough from the consequences of his actions.
On August 13, George Garofano filed docs in his criminal case asking the judge to lean towards the lower end of his plea deal, after prosecutors recommended a prison sentence of 10-16 months. He is angling for a short prison sentence, followed by home detention.
Garofano describes his actions as “not only illegal, but morally wrong, and it will take me a while to forgive myself for this, and I am disappointed in myself for anyone that I hurt, the victims, my family, and my friends.”
He also wrote, "I feel remorse for anyone that could have been affected by this on any scale, public or private. It is a part of my life that I will always regret, as it has never been a reflection of who I am as an individual."
Garofano says he enjoyed a “middle-class upbringing in a stable home with both of his parents" and claims to have done well in school and never got in trouble with the law until now.
He says the hacking took place at the end of his senior year of college. His attorney explains, “Of course, he was old enough to know better even back then, that the conduct he was engaging in was wrong. But he now stands before the Court having matured, accepting responsibility or his actions and not having been in trouble with the law since.”
Garofano points out he completed outpatient treatment and the felony conviction will be carried with him for his life. He claims the stigma is magnified in the small town he calls home. A friend of Garofano's wrote a letter on his behalf, saying that the news of the hacking spread through their town and “within hours George’s scarlet letter was permanent.”
Back in April, the 26-year-old Garofano pleaded guilty to hacking over 240 iCloud accounts, including those of Jennifer Lawrence, Kate Upton, and Kirsten Dunst.
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.