Hammond accepted responsibility for his actions by pleading guilty to the charges against him, but despite an outpouring of support, the federal judge overseeing the case handed down the maximum possible sentence.
Apparently, the fact that an FBI operative, Hector Xavier Monsegur, known online as “Sabu,” allegedly stood beside and directed Hammond throughout the hacking exploits was not enough to avoid a lengthy prison term. However, like his legions of followers and supporters across the political spectrum and around the world, Hammond is now publicly wondering how long it will take for the government to be held accountable for its own crimes.
“The acts of civil disobedience and direct action that I am being sentenced for today are in line with the principles of community and equality that have guided my life,” Hammond said in a prepared sentencing statement offered to media outlets and widely published across the web. “I took responsibility for my actions, by pleading guilty, but when will the government be made to answer for its crimes?”
Perhaps the most significant article produced by The New American so far based on the material obtained through Hammond’s “hacktivism” involved the revelation that the U.S. government was deliberately allowing Mexican cartel assassins into the United States. According to senior law enforcement sources cited in stolen Stratfor e-mails, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) was letting its “informants” cross the border knowing full well that they planned to murder.
“They [ICE] were handling big hit men from Juarez and letting them kill in the U.S.,” explained the federal law enforcement supervisor quoted in the e-mail, a claim the agency would neither confirm nor deny in a statement to The New American. The Stratfor source, identified only as “US714,” whom the firm described as a “US law enforcement officer with direct oversight of border investigations,” also confirmed that U.S. troops were in Mexico working with Mexican forces in a variety of controversial schemes.
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Photo of Hammond supporters outside a courthouse in 2012: AP Image