Aaron Swartz Prosecutor Accused of Driving Another Hacker to Commit Suicide

In 2008, Jonathan James took his own life after being charged with hacking

By on January 16th, 2013 09:21 GMT
After the world learned that Reddit co-founder Aaron Swartz committed suicide, his friends, family and hacktivists – including the Anonymous movement – have started looking for culprits.

Besides the current legislation, which they say needs to be changed, they also accuse the prosecutors handling his case of driving him to commit suicide.

First, while Anonymous hackers were breaching MIT’s website, asking for a reform of the current cybercrime legislation, a petition was created on the White House’s website asking for the removal from office of United States District Attorney Carmen Ortiz.

The petition needs 25,000 signatures by February 11, but it has already been signed by 34,000 individuals.

In the meantime, Aaron Swartz’s supporters and family have pointed the finger at Assistant United States Attorney Stephen Heymann, accusing the prosecutor of contributing to the hacker’s suicide.

This is not the first time when Heymann is accused of driving a hacker to commit suicide. According to BuzzFeed, back in 2008, 15-year-old Jonathan Joseph James took his own life after being accused of taking part in the largest identity hack in history.

“I honestly, honestly had nothing to do with TJX [the department store chain he and others were accused of hacking],” James said in his suicide note.

“I have no faith in the 'justice' system. Perhaps my actions today, and this letter, will send a stronger message to the public. Either way, I have lost control over this situation, and this is my only way to regain control.”

In a statement published on Tuesday, Anonymous hackers also pointed the finger at Heymann – along with MIT and Carmen Ortiz – for driving Swartz to commit suicide.

“HIS NAME IS Aaron Swartz and he is twenty-six years old. His name is Aaron Swartz, and Aaron Swartz will be twenty-six years old forever because you killed him,” the hackers wrote.

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