A writer linked to online hacking collective Anonymous has been sentenced to prison for threatening an FBI agent and two other federal counts in a closely watched case.
Barrett Lancaster Brown was sentenced to five years in prison Thursday in federal court in Dallas. The 33-year-old will be given credit for the more than two years he's already served.
Brown is often quoted on the workings of Anonymous, the worldwide hacking collective.
He came under federal investigation for posting a link to data stolen from the Austin-based defense contractor Stratfor. He later admitted to posting threats against an FBI agent, obstructing a search warrant and being an accessory to an unauthorized access of a protected computer.
Brown's case has been closely watched by free-speech advocates who have criticized his prosecution.
After the sentencing, Brown released the following statement:
"The U.S. government decided today that because I did such a good job investigating the cyber-industrial complex, they’re now going to send me to investigate the prison-industrial complex. For the next 35 months, I’ll be provided with free food, clothes, and housing as I seek to expose [wrongdoing] by Bureau of Prisons officials and staff and otherwise report on news and culture in the world’s greatest prison system. I want to thank the Department of Justice for having put so much time and energy into advocating on my behalf; rather than holding a grudge against me for the two years of work I put into in bringing attention to a DOJ-linked campaign to harass and discredit journalists like Glenn Greenwald, the agency instead labored tirelessly to ensure that I received this very prestigious assignment.
"Wish me luck!”