Reporter Jailed for Stolen Data Links

A journalist has been sentenced to five years in jail after he was found with connections to the Anonymous hacking collective.

After posting online leaks to stolen data, Barrett Brown originally faced charges that would have meant more than 100 years in prison, but his sentence was reduced after he pleaded guilty last year.

Barrett said he broke the law to reveal details of illegal government activity.

The case drew criticism from advocates of free speech and media rights organisations.

Journalist Glenn Greenwald, who publicised the National Security Agency (NCA) - a spying programme that was revealed by whistle-blower Edward Snowden - was a supporter of Mr Brown.

Brown, 33, became an advocate for Anonymous and was often interviewed about the group. He was arrested after posting a link to the data hacked from defence intelligence firm Stratfor.

Back in April Brown pleaded guilty to three charges, including the obstruction of a police search.

However, according to sources, Mr Brown launched a staunch rebuttal of the case.

He said: "The government exposed me to decades of prison time for copying and pasting a link to a publicly available file that other journalists were also linking to without being prosecuted."

His defence was backed by the media rights group who said he was being prosecuted for his journalistic work.

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