The man who illegally gained access to private nude photographs of numerous female celebrities is set to plead guilty to felony computer hacking charges in violation of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act.
Ryan Collins, a 36-year-old Pennsylvania man, became infamous after federal authorities discovered that he was the person behind the “Fappening” scandal, a naked celebrity picture leak that affected dozens of females involved in the entertainment industry. It is believed that Collins hacked more than 100 email accounts with Google and Apple, with most of the accounts belonging to Hollywood celebrities. Collins reportedly gained access to the accounts by employing a “phishing” scheme in which he masqueraded as the victims and reset their online passwords.
Although the case against Collins was initially filed in the United States District Court for the Central District of California, located in Los Angeles, federal officials have agreed to allow Collins to enter his guilty plea in the United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania since it is located near the computer hacker’s PA residence. When Collins appears in the federal court, he is expected to formally plead guilty to one count of gaining unauthorized access to a protected computer to obtain information.
Based on the terms of the plea agreement reached with federal prosecutors, Collins will likely be sentenced to 18 months in federal prison. Had the case gone to trial, Collins would have faced a potential term of incarceration of five years.
To learn more about this case, see the Billboard.com article, “Man Admits Stealing Nude Photos of Jennifer Lawrence & More Stars.”
If you or a loved one has been charged with an Internet sex crime or any other criminal offense in New Jersey or Pennsylvania, you need to talk to a qualified criminal defense lawyer immediately. The experienced criminal defense attorneys at Garber Law will help you fight your criminal charges. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation about your case.