Man who stole Jennifer Lawrence’s nude photos sentenced to months in prison
On Tuesday, a man who hacked Jennifer Lawrence’s nude photos was sentenced to nine months in prison. The Chicago man, 29-year-old Edward Majerczyk, pleaded guilty in federal court last year to one count of unauthorized access to a protected computer to obtain information for hacking into the accounts of about 30 celebrities and stealing photos and videos. Majerczyk signed a plea deal for his case to be moved to Chicago, and on top of serving nine months in prison, will be required to pay $5,700 in restitution for counseling services for one unnamed target.
Although Majerczyk hacked dozens of stars’ personal information, Lawrence was the most high profile case, and her nude images were leaked all over the internet in 2014. He was able to access the private accounts by sending emails to victims disguised as messages from internet service providers asking for their usernames and passwords. According to the plea deal, he hacked into the accounts of those who filled out that information.
In Majerczyk’s defense, his attorney, Thomas Needham, said in a court filing that his client was “suffering from depression and looked to pornography websites and internet chat rooms in an attempt to fill some of the voids and disappointment he was feeling in his life,” The Guardian reports.
In a 2014 interview with Vanity Fair, Lawrence said of the photo leaks, “It is not a scandal. It is a sex crime. It is a sexual violation. It’s disgusting.” She continued, “The law needs to be changed, and we need to change. That’s why these Web sites are responsible. Just the fact that somebody can be sexually exploited and violated, and the first thought that crosses somebody’s mind is to make a profit from it. It’s so beyond me. I just can’t imagine being that detached from humanity. I can’t imagine being that thoughtless and careless and so empty inside.”
A Pennsylvania man, 36-year-old Ryan Collins, was sentenced to 18 months in prison back in October for hacking into Lawrence’s and other celebs’ accounts. He pleaded guilty to one count of gaining unauthorized access to a protected computer to obtain information, reportedly using the same tactic as Majerczyk from November 2012 to September 2014. However, neither Collins nor Majerczyk were convicted for selling or posting the leaked photos online.