In yet another example of how biased and unfair the United States justice system is, Jeremy Hammond -- the founder of HackThisSite -- recieved the full possible sentence of 10 years in prison
This case has been extremely high-profile lately, making it to the covers of Wired, Huffington Post, Russia Today, Salon, The Guardian (primary source of the Edward Snowden leaks), Washington Post, and Forbes, just to name a few, and for good reason, too. As Rolling Stone pointed out, "Many supporters see Hammond's case as part of a broader trend of the government seeking what they say are disproportionately long sentences for acts that are better understood as civil disobedience than rampant criminality. Aaron Swartz, who faced prosecution under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act – the same statute used to prosecute Hammond – took his own life last year, after facing possible decades in prison for downloading academic journals from an MIT server."
Indeed, this case is high-profile because it shows how unfair civil disobedience and hacktivism is being portrayed and punished. But to truly exemplify how biased justice truly is, notice the one part in particular that Rolling Stone article highlights:
Hammond's supporters and attorneys had previously called on Judge Preska to recuse herself following the discovery that her husband was a victim of the hack she was charged with ruling on. That motion was denied.
We have mentioned this repeatedly already in our news posts about Hammond and Judge Preska. Unfortunately, impartiality and recusal is not enforced in the American justice system, and the onus of this enforcement falls solely and exclusively on the presiding judge. This would be as if police policed themselves and had no Internal Affairs bureau, and yet that is how the U.S. justice system has existed since its inception.
However, the part that is most troubling was an excerpt from Judge Preska's sentencing statement. She claimed the ultimate purpose of her ruling, invoking an unnecessary maximum sentence, was to fulfill a "need for adequate public deterrence." Literally and exactly, she is punishing Hammond to the maximum extent law will allow her to solely to send a message: Stand up and speak out against corruption, and the government WILL make it hurt.
Justice is not blind. No, in fact, it is perfectly capable of 20/20 vision. Justice simply does not care for those who do not silently obey the status quo, and cannot afford to buy laws to favor themselves.
Stay strong, Jeremy. When we find where you are being held, we will write you.