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THE AGE HACKING SCANDAL: Journalist-hackers from The Age set to confess their alleged crimes in plea-bargain

theageconfessesWhen The Age hackers were first accused of hacking offences, they denied it. Then they claimed it was in the ‘public interest’ and would be fighting it all the way when they were charged by prosecutors. Now, as their day of justice draws closer, the hackers now seem ready to confess their alleged crimes in a desperate bid to avoid jail.

The three accused Age hackers, who allegedly illegally penetrated an ALP voter database with a stolen password given to them by Greensparty honcho Fraser Brindley, are reported as being ready to confess their alleged criminal behaviour in a plea bargain.

The scandal came to light as The Age thundered on loudly about the ethical and criminal failings of UK journalists engaged in hacking, usually of telephone voicemail. Many dozens of British journalists have been charged with criminal offences relating to hacking although it’s understood The Age Three are the first in Australia.

The Melbourne Magistrates Court heard yesterday that criminal defendants, the 57-year-old Royce Millar, Nick McKenzie and Ben Schneiders were all looking to plead guilty to avoid a lengthy trial and possible imprisonment. A criminal conviction could prevent the high-flyers from freely entering many foreign jurisdictions, for environmental conferences or on assignment.

The Age’s hackers face criminal penalties of up to two years imprisonment…

Some around the Age had heard that Millar was actually looking forward to a stretch in jail because he’d probably able to get a few stories on prison corruption out of the place. That’s a genuine commitment to journalism, right there. But in the end, the prospect of being separated from his Google-machine, his mobile phone and digital recorder appear to have got to much for him.

essays writers

Millar and Schneiders attended the court proceedings although Nick McKenzie is believed to be overseas, possibly on assignment in Mexico, some sources suggested today. Brindley didn’t attend either but Environmental Protection Authority bureaucrat had a lawyer there.

The Age hacker’s desperate attempt at a plea bargain sits rather at odds with their insistence they were acting within the law, although we’ll reserve commentary on that til their confession occur.

The Magistrates Court criminal justice diversion programme that The Age hackers seek to be access would require the Magistrate to “assesses the suitability of the accused and a plan is developed. The plan may require the accused to:

■ apologise to the victim in a letter or in person (creating an exciting new fund-raising auction opportunity for the Victorian branch of Labor)
■ compensate the victim (hard to compensate the victims of privacy breaches without a substantial cash settlement as in England)
■ attend for counselling and/or treatment (clearly a good idea)
■ perform voluntary work (some ALP letter-boxing or how-to-vote distributing could be in order)
■ donate money to a charitable organisation, local community project or the like (the ALP federal campaign is reportedly running a bit short)
■ attend a defensive driving course and/or Road Trauma Awareness Seminar (not necessary in this case because of the Power of Cabcharge – with The Age journalists even in this harsh climate using the Power of Cabcharge to transport themselves everywhere, even down to their local watering hole or organic supermarket)
any other condition the Magistrate or Judicial Registrar deems appropriate (placing the rogues in stocks or giving them a public flogging sadly no longer available in the Victorian colony).

It is as yet unclear whether the prosecution will agree with The Age’s hackers attempt to escape imprisonment by entering into the criminal diversion programme. Some of them may be pleased to know:

The existence of prior convictions does not disqualify an accused from the program but the court will take this into account in deciding whether the Diversion Program is appropriate…

The case will resume in August.

Discussion

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  1. the story here is, who in the left handed over the pass word?

    Posted by fi fy fo fum | June 21, 2013, 12:33
  2. We have heard – but not had it substantiated – that the Greensparty infiltrated an ALP call centre to steal a password. Very Nixonian, if true.

    Posted by VEXNEWS | June 21, 2013, 12:37
  3. Meanwhile all of the crooks in the ALP continue to get away with murder.
    It is funny how so many of them use George Defteros as their lawyer. Shameless.

    Posted by Bob | June 21, 2013, 12:44
  4. Meanwhile all of the crooks in the ALP continue to get away with murder.
    It is funny how so many of them use George Deftero s as their lawyer. Shameless.

    Posted by Bob | June 21, 2013, 12:45
  5. Meanwhile all of the cro_oks in the ALP continue to get away with murder.
    It is funny how so many of them use George Defteros as their lawyer. Shameless.

    Posted by Bob | June 21, 2013, 12:45
  6. Meanwhile all of the crooks in the ALP continue to get away with mu_rder.
    It is funny how so many of them use George Defteros as their lawyer. Shameless.

    Posted by Bob | June 21, 2013, 12:45
  7. Meanwhile all of the cro oks in the ALP continue to get away with mur der.
    It is funny how so many of them use George Def teros as their lawyer. Shameless.

    Posted by Bob | June 21, 2013, 12:46
  8. Meanwhile all of the cro oks in the ALP continue to get away with mur der.
    It is funny how so many of them use George Def teros as their lawyer.

    Posted by Shameless | June 21, 2013, 12:47
  9. Meanwhile all of the cro oks in the ALP continue to get away with mur der.
    It is funny how so many of them use Ge orge Def teros as their lawyer. Shameless.

    Posted by Shameless | June 21, 2013, 12:47
  10. Meanwhile all of the cro oks in the AL P continue to get away with mur der.
    It is funny how so many of them use George Def teros as their lawyer. Shameless.

    Posted by Shameless | June 21, 2013, 12:48
  11. If ALP password have been stolen this is further proof that the ALP is unfit to govern. DSD & ASIO be careful too.

    Posted by Adrian Jackson | June 21, 2013, 12:57
  12. Adrian. You are insane. Although nice work on Linden

    Posted by H the B | June 21, 2013, 16:43
  13. Thanks H the B. We are all a bit insane at times too.

    Posted by Adrian Jackson | June 21, 2013, 16:51
  14. I presume Nixonian is a reference to leftist and luvver of all things Green: Christine Nixon?

    It is clearly not a reference to Patriot and President, Richard Nixon.

    Posted by Anonski | June 21, 2013, 17:29
  15. No more ham for me, I’ve seen the synagogue light and joined the Jewish flock.

    Posted by Rabbi Adrian Jackson | June 21, 2013, 17:41
  16. […] Source:  http://www.vexnews.com/2013/06/the-age-hacking-scandal-journalist-hackers-from-the-age-set-to-confes… […]

    Posted by Gregory d. evans | THE AGE HACKING SCANDAL: Journalist-hackers from The Age set to confess their alleged crimes in plea-bargain | June 22, 2013, 6:02
  17. From personal experience, Richard Baker is not a turd like the other three. I think at least he has some ethics. McKenzie, however. A vile, grubby, egotistical snivelling turd. Send him to jail first!

    Posted by Roy Tuswell Seat Sniffer | June 22, 2013, 10:40
  18. Adrian you a winner.

    Posted by Fi fy pho fum | June 22, 2013, 11:42
  19. I like nick mckenzie

    Posted by Fi fy pho fum | June 22, 2013, 11:42
  20. When Greens act criminally it is an act of purity.

    Posted by Bob Brown | June 22, 2013, 14:43
  21. Me think Julia G has to go. Party cannot be personal indulgence of leader. Where did bright idea of abortion debate rise from? I assume Gillard and co don’t think men are required to win election. Gees
    Bring back dud Rudd and save some family furniture, Gillard simply doesn’t understand public. Never had to garner a vote, never had to worry about a job always treated like the golden girl. Doesn’t prepare you well for leadership!

    Posted by Fi fy pho fum | June 22, 2013, 14:55
  22. Where is big adrian! Big sausage little brain

    Posted by Fi fy pho fum | June 22, 2013, 23:40
  23. Rabbi AJ is an imposter

    Posted by Adrian Jackson | June 23, 2013, 2:12
  24. Missing from the lineup is the mastermind hacker Brindley Fraser. He should lose his job. Imagine all the computer accounts held by the government’s environmental agency that Brindley Fraser has access to. Could he along with Adam Brandt have handed on confidential government files and client email accounts to the Greens fundraising campaign manager?

    Somehow my email address fallen into the Greens hands. Suspected to have been supplied by Adam Bandt’s electoral office.

    Posted by The Green mean machine | June 23, 2013, 3:24
  25. Gillard should pull the pin. Could m’am take KOD with her? Thankyou from a grateful nation.

    Posted by Anon | June 24, 2013, 10:46
  26. Journo’s rant on about the need for tougher sentences so here’s there chance to push for 2 years jail each, out in 18 months for good behaviour.

    Posted by Anonymous | June 24, 2013, 23:09
  27. No it is moronic tryhard pollies like Red Ted who rant on about the need for tougher sentences.

    Corrupt political parties who have exempted themselves from privacy laws will not continue to get away with prosecuting the journalists who shine a light on their abuses of our privacy.

    Posted by shoot me | June 25, 2013, 1:23
  28. What the hell is Gillard thinking, knitting a kangaroo for the Royal birth?
    She is making herself even more unelectable and we are all laughing at her.
    It is sad to see a reformist and decent government destroy itself with media, publicity and policy advice taken from imbeciles.

    Posted by anon | June 25, 2013, 11:37
  29. The journo’s should be treated like corrupt cops – harshly. They set themselves up as a vital cog in the wheel of democracy so when they break the law they are betraying that trust.

    An ordinary citizen should get a good behaviour bond, a journalist should get a year behind bars maximum security.

    Time to think about what they’ve done.

    Posted by Give them a Year | June 25, 2013, 22:06
  30. For a diversion program to be implemented, the prosecution has to agree that it is a suitable disposition of the matter. It doesn’t matter how eloquently the defendants argue their case before the Magistrate if the prosecution does not support diversion as suitable. Once the prosecution is on side, the Court still has to determine that it is a reasonable and proper way to deal with the offence. A fact statement has to be agreed and handed up to the judge by the prosecution and the accused has to accept responsibility for the actions – it is not a guilty plea as such but it isn’t much different to a plea of guilty.

    As someone with over thirty years experience in information technology and security, I believe the hacking of a confidential computer system including some personal (rather than journalistic) voyeurism is a relatively serious matter and the prosecution should not agree to the diversion program.

    A very large amount of public money was spent by having the computer crime squad analyze The Age’s computer systems to collect evidence. It would be a travesty to have spent such large amounts of money on a matter which merits a mere diversion program.

    Posted by Giuseppe De Simone | June 25, 2013, 23:59
  31. fuck off Papa Guiseppe you filthy wog

    Posted by greasy motherfucker | June 26, 2013, 11:34
  32. So long Julia, you have destroyed the ALP and will be missed as much as a dose of the clap.
    Welcome back Kevin, good to see morality, integrity and intelligence back in the chair.

    Posted by anon | June 26, 2013, 12:36
  33. To the self-confessed somewhat slippery criminal who admits to sexual relations with his/her immediate female progenitor who eloquently expressed his views at 11:34 today:

    Along with the honour of having been born in Australia in 1958, I am delighted to be reminded of my ethnicity of which I am very proud and the sixty-one years my Italian born eighty-five year-old father has spent in Australia.

    The use of the adjective “filthy” before the noun “wog” implies that you feel I need to cleanse myself. Thank you for the timely reminder that all of us need spiritual as well as physical cleansing as we are all less than perfect.

    My given name is spelled “Giuseppe” and not how you misspelled it.

    I do have two wonderful sons – Johnny and Tommy – so the use of the word “papa” is apt.

    The profanity at the start of your seven word outburst is somewhat unimaginative and lacks any finesse whatsoever.

    You imply that I should use copulation as a means of departure which is the most apposite meaning of the word “off” as used in the sentence “I’m off”.

    I have not tried this method of transportation and I tend to believe it may be ineffectual just like you.

    Posted by Giuseppe De Simone | June 26, 2013, 12:46
  34. Only One Faction

    Posted by Freddy | June 26, 2013, 22:46
  35. Why this big jahoo about this hacking? Uncle Sam says it’s OK, so why the fuss?

    Posted by Brimbank finest | June 28, 2013, 21:01
  36. I hear that there has been hacking into the electronic roll of Victorian MP . Is anyone investigating?

    Posted by Sleuth | July 5, 2013, 18:23

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