Anonymous Member Jailed for Hacking Police Sites

Dennis Faas's picture

A member of international hacking group Anonymous has been sentenced to three years in prison for attacking a series of law enforcement websites. John Anthony Borell III will spend the next thirty-six months in a federal penitentiary.

The 22-year-old Borell is a native of Ohio but the sites he targeted were based in all parts of the continental United States. During the early part of 2012 Borell hacked the websites of police agencies located in Utah, New York, and California.

He also targeted a municipal government website based in Missouri.

Utah Police Site Disabled For Three Months

Court documents indicate that the attacks cost Borell's targets thousands of dollars in damage. In fact, the Utah police site Borell attacked remained offline for almost three months. (Source:

It's not yet clear just how Borell fits into the very loosely organized Anonymous network. It's also not particularly clear why he targeted law enforcement sites.

Some experts have suggested that the attacks were carried out as a form of protest against the United States' ongoing war against Internet piracy.

Anonymous hackers have previously targeted websites run by the US Department of Justice and major arms manufacturer Lockheed Martin.

Hacker Boasts of Attacks on Twitter

What we do know is that police were able to track the hacker because he boasted of the attacks through social media (including Twitter) and various other websites.

"That didn't hurt the investigation," authorities said at the time of Borell's arrest in 2012. (Source:

Borell, who plead guilty to carrying out the hacks, won't just be facing jail time. He's also agreed to pay roughly $227,000 in damages.

Still, the convicted man's age and a reported history of drug abuse may have resulted in a lighter sentence. Borell, who was recently married, will be allowed to wait until December 6, 2013, before having to report to a federal prison.

"We don't want to see you in court again," Borell was told by Judge Robert J. Shelby. (Source:

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