Three French Anonymous hackers go on trial for targeting police officers

3 members of French Anonymous hacktivist group go on trial for Operation Megaupload

Three French Anonymous activists went on trial Tuesday, in a Paris court for an operation carried out in 2012. The three were produced before the court for hacking a police union website, collecting contact information for hundreds of police officers and disclosing the details online in 2012.

A prosecutor asked a Paris court to hand the three men, aged 22 to 27, a one-year suspended sentence and a 5,000 euro (5,500 dollar) fine each, a lawyer for the police officers. The three member of French wing of Anonymous are also accused of breaking into two government sites and blocking public access for days.

Back in Jan,2012, Anonymous had called for Operation Megaupload in retaliation for the shutdown of the file sharing service Megaupload and the arrest of four workers.  The French Anonymous unit had hacked into the website of SGP-FO police union and released the names, phone numbers, and personal and professional email addresses of 541 police officers who were members.

Under Operation Megaupload, Anonymous had also DDoSed the websites of UMG (the company responsible for the lawsuit against Megaupload), the United States Department of Justice, the United States Copyright Office, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the MPAA, Warner Brothers Music, the RIAA, and the HADOPI the afternoon of January 19, 2012.

The operations by Anonymous were speculated to have been driven further by anger over the House of Representatives’ Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the Senate’s Protect Intellectual Property Act (PIPA)

Three members from French unit of Anonymous were subsequently arrested and now the affected police officers are asking for 73,000 euros ($80,400) in damages from them.

The criminal court will deliver its ruling March 22.

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