BB LOS ANGELES - The hacker who helped leak personal photographs of Jennifer Lawrence and Kate Upton has been sentenced to eight months in prison.
George Garofano, 26 - who arranged a phishing scheme with other people to obtain the passwords and usernames of over 240 Apple iCloud accounts, including several celebrities - was ordered to serve the jail term followed by three years of supervised release by US District Judge Victor A. Bolden in Bridgeport, Connecticut, on Wednesday.
He was recently released on a $50,000 bond, and has now been ordered to report to prison on October 10th this year.
Judge Bolden ordered Garofano to perform 60 hours of community service while on supervised release.
Earlier this month, Garofano filed documents in his criminal case asking the judge to give him a shorter prison sentence followed by home detention after prosecutors recommended 10-16 months behind bars. The prosecution wrote in a sentencing memo to the court: ‘’Mr Garofano’s offense was a serious one. He illegally hacked into his victims’ online accounts, invaded their privacy, and stole their personal information, including private photos.
‘’He did not engage in this conduct on just one occasion. He engaged in this conduct 240 times over the course of 18 months. ‘’Not only did Mr Garofano keep for himself the photographs he stole, he disseminated them to other individuals. He may have also sold them to others to earn ‘extra income’.’’
But Garofano claimed he had ‘’already suffered enough’’ and said that the crime took place at the end of his senior year of college, and while he should’ve known better, he feels deep ‘’remorse’’ for those affected.
He said in the legal papers: ‘’It was 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. 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.’’ His lawyer added: ‘’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.’’
In April, Garofano pleaded guilty to one count of unauthorised access to a protected computer to obtain information and was released on a $50,000 bond.
Following the 2014 hack, Jennifer’s rep said at the time: ‘’This is a flagrant violation of privacy.’’