Blog Jay Leiderman Law

In October of 2012 I got an email requesting an interview.  I get asked a lot of questions about a lot of topics, so I figured the reported, Luke Allnut, just wanted to ask me about how unjust the American criminal justice is, or about medical marijuana, or any of the various criminal law that I have lectured about over the last 15 years.  Of course, at that time I was getting a lot of questions about hackers, the computer collective known as Anonymous, hacktivism (hacker activism) or just computer issues in general.
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I’ve become well known as an advocate for changing certain computer laws – especially the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act or “CFAA.”  This act was codified as 18 USC 1030 in 1984. Believe it or not, this was, in part, a reaction to the movie “War Games.” In 1984, there were few places one could visit on the Internet. One would have to place their phone into their modem and specifically seek out that network.  In 1991, http protocol was established. Now one can use wifi and a browser and go anywhere anytime. You don’t have to dial up DARPA or MIT and request access to their system. Yet that law remains on the books – largely unchanged. That’s a horse and buggy law for a race car society. It is grotesquely outdated.

The New York Times did an article that centers on my client, Matthew Keys, who formerly worked in the social media department or Reuters.


Criminal Defense Attorney and “Hacktivist’s Advocate” Jay Leiderman discussed in the New York Times

It is a good article, well worth the read.  here’s a small quote mentioning me: Jay Leiderman, a criminal defense lawyer in Ventura, Calif., [is] known for representing computer hackers affiliated with Anonymous…

“Anyone horrified by the amount of jail time” Mr. Keys faced should join in calling for Congressional reform of the computer fraud act, Trevor Timm, an advocate and blogger at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a nonprofit that supports an open Internet, wrote in a Twitter post on Thursday.

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Why does Criminal Defense Lawyer Jay Leiderman choose to represent activists and hackers?  This interview that appeared int eh Cryptosphere answers those questions.

The fabulous Raincoaster did an interview with me when I was leaving prison.  I was visiting an inmate, I wasn’t incarcerated.  We were at this tiny airport where they land only tiny planes.  I stepped into the tiny bathroom to try to get some privacy for the interview.  It was quite a moment.

After a three hour delay, the good folks at this undisclosed airport (the case is still pending) moved us from the waiting room into the small pre-boarding room.  The full plain load, about 20 of us, were in this pretty small place, packed in.  And then I got the call.  Can I do that interview now?  Well, it’s still a half-hour before we board.  Sure.  But I’n not going to be rude, and talk on my cell phone in the midst of my fellow sardines.  So I tried to go back by the metal detectors.  No way.  I had only one more choice: the bathroom.  And in I went, and a great interview was all that took place in there.  I promise. Good thing we were done and just chatting when the knock on the door came. Some poor lady had been waiting twenty-five minutes.  We were about to board a plane with no bathroom. I had to hang up.


Criminal Defense Lawyer Jay Leiderman speaks outside the federal courthouse in New York City after the Jeremy Hammond sentencing

The interviews centers around the FBI’s arrest of activists and the subsequent turning of those activists into informants.  Once a friend, now a snitch.  It is devastating to both a community and a movement.

I’ll give you just one small part from the introduction, and then I invite you to read the entire interview that emerged from a tiny bathroom in a tiny airport waiting for a tiny airplane in an undisclosed location.  Here goes:

The knock at the door. The blinding lights, the shouted orders, the helmets, the uniforms, the guns, the confusion, the melee.

The raid.

When it’s all over, and the FBI is sifting through everything from your Friends list to your Playstation, who do you call? If you’re a hacker or a member of Anonymous, California criminal defense lawyer Jay Leiderman is going to be somewhere on that list.

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Businessman Operated Bitcoin Ponzi Scheme, Judge Says (“A Texas federal judge ordered a man who operated a bitcoin-based Ponzi scheme to pay $40.7 million in penalties and disgorgement.”)
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