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Sklyarov Released On $50,000 Bail

timothy posted more than 12 years ago | from the roaming-the-streets-with-innocent-muggers-and-rapists dept.

The Courts 534

Mike Schiraldi was the first to write about Dmitry Sklyarov's release from jail, even before it happened: "According to this live report from the courtroom, Dmitri will probably be out of jail real soon now. Of course, he still won't be allowed to leave Northern California, but it's a start ..." Soon after, inaneboy pointed out this Reuters story on yahoo which says that Sklyarov has been released, on 50,000 dollars bail, raised by his employer, ElcomSoft. phalse phace wrote to say that the EFF has just posted an announcement as well as some background.

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534 comments

free dimtry (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2163893)

f0rst pist!

Re:free dimtry (-1)

mackga (990) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163916)

i PISS [terra.es] on you, you fucking malodorous fuck.

fp! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2163897)

Wheeeeee!!

YEAY! (-1, Offtopic)

Tracy Reed (3563) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163898)

YEAY!

fp (-1)

mackga (990) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163899)

fuck post

Re:fp (-1)

asbestos_diaper (456125) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163911)

Missed! Maybe the AC could teach you a thing or two?

Re:fp (-1)

mackga (990) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163936)

ac's are, by definition, fuckstick zombies who couldn't teach a cow how to shit.

Re:fp (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2164093)

I got fp and you didn't.

Neener neener neener.

California? (-1, Offtopic)

wetdogjp (245208) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163900)

Isn't not being able to leave California like being in jail? fp?

If I were him... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2163963)

I would bolt my ass back to Russia and figure out
how to work off the $50k. Screw standing trial
when he knows it's just gonna be another David
and Goliath case.

Re:California? (1)

wackysootroom (243310) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163967)

It is if your name is Snake Plissken.

Re:California? (3, Offtopic)

dustman (34626) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164001)


Isn't not being able to leave California like being in jail?
Hmm...

California: Vast, beatiful scenery
Jail: 4x6 cell, concrete

California: Sunshine
Jail: Flourescent track lights, or perhaps a bare bulb. (Note: I don't speak from experience here, but from such great documentaries as "The Shawshank Redemption"", "Escape From Alcatraz", and "Sleepers")

California: I'm hungry, I haven't eaten in like 8 hours, this sucks.
Jail: This constantly being beaten by corrupt guards sucks.

California: Bikini (somewhat)clad women, everyone stares at hungrily.
Jail: You (*shudder*).

fp?
shaddup

Re:California? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2164117)

more like: California: Hot, humid, smoggy shithole Jail: 4x6 cell, cool concrete, toilet right next to your bed California: Glaring, UV-laden sunshine Jail: Mmm...artificial light California: I'm a whiney asshole and I need my soyshake and vegetarian jerky so I can be constipated for the rest of my pathetic existence Jail: I ran out of paper for my autobiography, this sucks California: Dirty mexicans and dumber-than-dirt, stuck-up, snotty white princesses Jail: You and Bubba...could be worse

Re:California? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2164037)

If you're White, yes. Fucking state has been overrun with undesirables.

vs. Indiana? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2164112)

Apparently, controlled substances are much easier to come by in Indiana.

Do all the people with teeth out here intimidate you? Or is it the genetic diversity (AKA family trees with BRANCHES)? Maybe the traditional fallback - earthquakes, oh no! Or all the homosexuals, who somehow find straight, toothless, fat midwesterners strangely attractive? Or is it that suspenders aren't hip out here? Maybe it's the constant good weather?

Oh wait a minute, odds are you have never been here.

I was there, where do I send pictures? (4, Informative)

RetsamYthgimla (458392) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163904)

Hey, I was there from about 10:45 AM to noon. Where would I send pictures I took with my digital camera? I don't have any place to host the pictures from.

Re:I was there, where do I send pictures? (1)

loudici (27971) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163939)

it takes about 5 minutes to set-up a yahoo club and put the pictures there.

Jussieu is where the Parisian coke whores hang out (-1)

Proctal Relapse (467579) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163982)

tu as faim?

Re:I was there, where do I send pictures? (4, Informative)

gorgon (12965) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164015)

Contact somebody at the SF Bay Area Free Dmitry site [freesklyarov.org] . They have a bunch of protest pictures up, and I'm sure they'd be glad to add more.

not again, I counted it (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2163905)

code osdn awards privacy slashNET older stuff rob's page preferences submit story advertising supporters past polls topics about jobs hof Sections 7/31 apache 8/6 (4) askslashdot 8/5 books 8/2 bsd 8/4 developers 8/5 features 8/6 interviews 6/29 radio 8/6 (5) science 8/6 (2) yro OSDN freshmeat Linux.com SourceForge ThinkGeek NewsForge SlashCode Slow down cowboy! Slashdot requires you to wait 20 seconds between hitting reply on comments.pl and submitting a comment. It's been 16 seconds since you hit 'reply'!

The feds must be really ptroud... (0, Redundant)

orallo (323134) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163910)

This is ridiculous. In jail for doing his job doing it well, and being willing to share his knowledge... Congratulations to the feds.

Re:The feds must be really ptroud... (4, Insightful)

Entropy_ah (19070) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163975)

Just because its "doing your job" dosent make it legal. Hitmen do there job, and get put in jail for it. The question is not whether he broke the law, he did. The question is whether the law is unconstitutional and or unethical. The feds at this point cannot just be like "You know what, this law just isnt right. Let him go." Thats not their job. It will be a long process for him to ever be released.

Re:The feds must be really ptroud... (2, Insightful)

Hemos Love Troll (240085) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164011)

So what you're saying is that we shouldn't be upset with the Feds for throwing somebody in jail for no good reason because they're just doing their jobs...

Re:The feds must be really ptroud... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2164054)

Exactly. The fbi does not create laws, they enforce them. They are a part of the executive branh, not the legislative or judiscial. I'm assuming here you are equating Feds == fbi. If it goes to trial perhaps the law will be overturned by the courts. Thats the way it works.

Re:The feds must be really ptroud... (1, Insightful)

Hemos Love Troll (240085) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164080)

I know how the system works, but doesn't it bother you just a little to be saying that Sklyarov can't say "I was just doing my job!", but the FBI can? Both of them are just doing what they're told, but one should know better and one shouldn't? Doesn't that strike you as just a little hypocritical?

Re:The feds must be really ptroud... (2)

blang (450736) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164041)

You are, of course, as wrong as they come. In any criminal case, the prosecutors, and the investigators are the first judges of a case. If they believe a case can not stick, or is too weak, or is not considered important, they'll just take your fingerprints and let you go.

Bringing a bad case to court is considered a loss of face for any prosecutor, and they hate to do that. So our criticism of FBI for blindly charging into this case stands.

Why do people think Sklyarov broke the law? (1)

LiamQ (110676) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164063)

The question is not whether he broke the law, he did.

Why do you say that? What evidence is there that Sklyarov was responsible for distributing the software in the U.S.? He's not charged with writing the software, because even the feds know it was perfectly legal for Sklyarov to write it in Russia.

Doing your job (4, Interesting)

Johnycomel8ly (472636) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164082)

I think the real fact of the matter is that what Sklyarov did in his own country was well within the confines of Russian legality. From his point of view, he most certainly did not break the law. The United States is setting a new precedent in legislation. Do internet laws have unlimited jurisdiction? If so, who decides what these universal laws will be? Apparently, the US is taking it upon themselves to baby-sit the entire world. Hypothetical situation time: Say, for instance, I'm the writer of a strongly capitalistic, widely circulated e-zine, and I publish an article denouncing the dictator of a communist country. I then decide to take a trip to said country. "Well, I'm sorry, but we don't have this 'freedom of speech' thing here. You're under arrest." For some reason that just doesn't seem right to me, but mayve that's just me.

Re:The feds must be really ptroud... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2164010)

He's just another spammer clogging up the net who should be sent to jail for a long, long time.

Very indicative of our society today... (3, Interesting)

Gogl (125883) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163921)

We do the right thing.... sooner or later.... heh.
Oh well, I guess I'm just an eternal cyncic. Still, I'm very glad this happened, and hopefully he'll be able to get on with his life ASAP. Props to his employer for raising the cash. Somehow I doubt Adobe would ever do the right thing and reimburse them. I must say this whole experience has left me with a very bad taste in my mouth regarding Adobe.... I'll make sure never to purchase any of their products, and reccomend the same to any of my employers/employees/anyone.

Re:Very indicative of our society today... (3, Informative)

LordNimon (85072) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163956)

Adobe doesn't need to reimburse Elcomsoft. After the trial, Elcomsoft will get its $50K back. That's how bails work.

Re:Very indicative of our society today... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2163979)

You know that bail payments are refunded if you don't flee, right?

Re:Very indicative of our society today... (5, Funny)

Bozar (458678) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164061)

As Winston Churchill said (keep in mind his mother was American), "You can count on the Americans to do the right thing, once they've exhausted every other possible course of action."

man (5, Funny)

BilldaCat (19181) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163927)

He's gonna have a lot of e-mail to catch up on. Wasn't he in jail for the whole SirCam bit?

Re:man (4, Funny)

tssm0n0 (200200) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163954)

He's gonna have a lot of e-mail to catch up on. Wasn't he in jail for the whole SirCam bit?

Not to mention all the slashdot articles he's gonna have to read about himself...

Re:man (1)

Louis Savain (65843) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163957)

This is funny, BilldaCat.

I wonder... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2163928)

who the idiot bail bondsman was that bet he wouldn't hop on the first flight to Moscow.

Re:I wonder... (1)

NullPointer (6898) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164073)

If the bail was $50,000 and they paid it all, there is no bondsman.

Sklyarov's release (1, Insightful)

jcronen (325664) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163932)

I think I speak for all of us when I say, "It's about time."

In addition to the $50,000 raised by ElcomSoft for his release, will they be helping with his legal defense as well?

I'm sure that the EFF and hopefully even the ACLU will pitch in to his ongoing legal defense also... what other groups could get involved as well? And do they even know enough to get involved?

Impressive (1)

xZAQx (472674) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163940)

His employer raised that money? That's great! Talk about dedication! More companies should back their employees in this manner. I can hardly believe this; are they hiring???

Re:Impressive (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2164070)

Yah, go move to Russia. Its a great place to live.

Re:Impressive (4, Funny)

Chairboy (88841) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164127)

> His employer raised that money? That's great! Talk about dedication! More companies should back their employees in this manner.
> I can hardly believe this; are they hiring???

Why, you planning on getting arrested?

bail? (2, Funny)

AKA da JET (280057) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163941)

I think the feds should pay HIM $50,000 personally and get him on a private luxery jet home and get down on their knees and beg for forgivness :)

What for? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2164065)

For breaking our laws? Oh, that's right, this is slashdot, breaking laws you find inconvenient is OK.

Sorry, Mr. Sklyarov, we're sorry, so sorry we have laws here that you don't agree with. We understand you aren't a citizen, so it's a minor inconvenience to circumvent our pitiful voter registration protections (thanks to the Motor Voter bill) and vote anyways, but that's still inconvenient. The only way you had to 'express yourself' was to just break our laws. We're so so sorry we left you no other avenue. So sorry. Please accept our humble forgivness, oh 'leet h4x0r.

Re:What for? (0)

Hemos Love Troll (240085) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164107)

When did the entire world become bound by US law? I must have been absent that day.

Smuggle Him Out Before They Lock Him up Again (1)

Louis Savain (65843) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163942)

Bravo! Now, another 10 grand could easily smuggle him out of the country. Freedom is worth it.

Re:Smuggle Him Out Before They Lock Him up Again (1)

Ksop (132400) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164084)

10K Jesus! For that kind of money I could smuggle a donut factory through the LA county sheriff dept. It would only take a few franklins to get him across a border.

Re:Smuggle Him Out Before They Lock Him up Again (5, Insightful)

TheRogue (71674) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164105)

Define Irony: Fleeing to Russia from the US for the sake of Freedom...

ThinkGeek Is In Trouble... (5, Funny)

cmdrsed (472978) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163950)

What is Think Geek going to do with all of those Free Dimitri [thinkgeek.com] shirts they just got in? Nobody is going to want them now....

Re:ThinkGeek Is In Trouble... (3, Informative)

jandrese (485) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163974)

He's only out on Bail. He can still be sent to jail if he is found in violation of the DMCA. I wouldn't toss your Free Dimitri shirt quite yet.

He is not free, just has a much bigger cell... (4, Insightful)

kaszeta (322161) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164007)

What is Think Geek going to do with all of those Free Dimitri shirts they just got in? Nobody is going to want them now....

Ummm, he is most certainly not free. He is just out on bond awaiting trial. He has no passport, and no freedom of movement (he can't leave California, and he most certainly can't go home to Russia).

Yes, this is an improvement of his general situation, but this is far from over. He still faces the possibility of hundreds of thousands of dollars in fines and years in prison.

For now, he just has a much bigger jail cell.

Re:ThinkGeek Is In Trouble... (1)

Chakat (320875) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164019)

What is Think Geek going to do with all of those Free Dimitri shirts they just got in? Nobody is going to want them now....

<rant>Damn right. I happen to be wearing one of those shirts right now. Of course, that's how my life goes...</rant>

Of course, the realist in me says that after a show trial, they'll find him guilty and throw him in some hell-hole super-maximum prison somewhere. Too many high up people are 0wned by the copyright fascists so I'm doubting he'll get a truly fair trial (thinking back to Keith Henson's "trial" here)

Adobe (5, Insightful)

AntiNorm (155641) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163952)

If, as they claim, Adobe doesn't want him prosecuted any more, then why don't THEY pay the $50000 bail?

Re:Adobe (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2164067)

$50,000 bail = ~$5,000 paid out to the bondsman. For the trouble he made, I think he deserves to pay at least that much.

What's the big deal? (0, Flamebait)

CaseStudy (119864) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163953)

So he posted bail; this is newsworthy? Even if you think the case is important, this doesn't add anything, unless you're going to argue that the bail amount was too large or too small.

Re:What's the big deal? (2)

technomancerX (86975) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164030)

Actually, it's the fact that they finally HAD a bail hearing... I mean the guy was in for what, 3 weeks without a hearing?

Congrats to reuters (5, Interesting)

bricriu (184334) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163955)

... for pointing something that should get hyped in every dealing that anyone sympathetic to Sklyarov's plight has with anyone else: that this was legal under Russian law.

Seriously, the fact that he's a Russian (read "commie") coder (read "hacker") can, and may, get played against him in the press to no end, so it's nice just to see those little words, "legal in Russia," that should humble the cretins who pushed this misguided law.

"Ah, for the freedoms of Mother Russia..." *sigh*

Re:Congrats to reuters (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2164113)

Just because it is legal to *create* a product in Russia doesn't mean that it is legal to *sell* said product in America.

is $50000 bail low? (1)

0WaitState (231806) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163961)

Given that this guy is being jailed for an IP "crime" with penalties up to $500,000, does a bail amount of $50000 indicate that the judge thought maybe the feds were overstepping a little?

Any lawyers present? Did elcomsoft only have to put up a 10% surety in cash?

Re:is $50000 bail low? (3, Interesting)

blang (450736) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163995)

Yep. $50000 for bail is a well-deserved slap in the face of FBI. I wonder what's going on inside FBI now. The agents are not stupid, just following orders. I am sure they know as well as all of us that this law is bogus. Must suck to be them.

Re:is $50000 bail low? (1)

greenrd (47933) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164052)

The key words are up to. Just because the media talked about Dmitry getting slapped with a $0.5m fine doesn't mean that was ever a realistic amount.

Then again, IANAL, and since this is an unprecedented arrest, who knows what the judge might decide?

Re:is $50000 bail low? (5, Informative)

MAXOMENOS (9802) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164102)

The slap in the face goes beyond just a low bail. Consider this:
  • The Judge is allowing Dmitry out on bail without any intrusive monitoring device. The only thing keeping Dmitry in the US is the fact that the US is holding his passport.
  • The low bail and the very lax terms of his bail were set by an agreement between the EFF and the US Attourney's office. The judge just "rubberstamped" the deal.

I personally wouldn't consider this a slap in the face of the FBI, but perhaps a slap in the face of the DMCA. Clearly the US Atty. intends to prosecute, but I suspect that John Ashcroft not exactly enthusiastic to prosecute Sklyarov. If we keep up the political pressure on Ashcroft, we may indeed stop this prosecution altogether.

So, let's step up the pressure. Call John Ashcroft (the US Attourney General) at 202-353-1555 and let him know that you think Sklyarov's prosecution under DMCA is unjust.

Re:is $50000 bail low? (2)

VivianC (206472) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164103)

Must really suck to be them! Many of them won't know about this ruling until they get home tonight because they don't have Internet access!

Check out this [chicagotribune.com] story in the Chicago Tribune about the state of their computers.

Re:is $50000 bail low? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2164018)

Didn't Kevin Mitnick get denied bail? Of course, he was a flight risk so that could also have been part of it.

50K is very low tho...if you can get a bond for 10% of the amount then it is no problem for even a street thug to come up with $5,000.

Now is the time... (-1)

David Kurtzberg (462323) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163962)

To take the law into our own hands, hunt him down and practice vigilante justice. The world must be made safe for IP!

now we get to the real question... (3, Funny)

3-State Bit (225583) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163968)

he still won't be allowed to leave Northern California...
Which earnestly solicits the question "may he code [eff.org] ???"

Re:now we get to the real question... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2163989)

haha, good one. (Because, as we know, in russia he was allowed :], even with the DMCA in full farce. (Since, as we've said infinite times, it happened not under US jurisdiction but russian). ).

Should he escape? (1)

spectro (80839) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163973)

What do you guys think: should he stay for the hearing or escape someway back to Russia?. I think he can ask for asylum or something over an Russian embassy.

If he stays is going to be a long way...

He can escape as a sign of protest but I guess that will hurt hackers' image even more.

Re:Should he escape? (2)

JoeShmoe (90109) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164029)

He easily could. Especially since he is guilty of no crime under Russian law.

But I sure hope he doesn't, and I think the EFF and Elcomsoft understand that this is a valuable opportunity to strike a blow against the DMCA.

I mean...the EFF can call freakin Adobe to testify that this is undeserved and leave the FBI with severe egg on the face.

- JoeShmoe

Re:Should he escape? (1)

tssm0n0 (200200) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164043)

What do you guys think: should he stay for the hearing or escape someway back to Russia?. I think he can ask for asylum or something over an Russian embassy.

He's better off staying here. If he did make it back home, then the feds might make a big stink of it and get the Russian government to arrest him and extradite (sp?) him back to us. Then he'll have some more charges on top of what he's got now and he'll deffinitly spend some time in jail for fleeing the country.

Re:Should he escape? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2164057)

If he does run, he will not truely be free. First, he will never be able to return to the US because he will be immediately arrested, with NO chance of bail.

Second, he will also not be able to visit MANY of the US allies. If he does he faces the same arrest risk and the extradition to the US.

His only hope is to win on his day in court and every bit of support will help further that effort.

On a more selfish note, the DMCA if finally going to get it's first test!

Re:Should he escape? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2164091)

I say exile the evil commie hacker to Sealand!

A couple SF Chronicle articles (4, Informative)

LiamQ (110676) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163980)

Here are a couple new SF Chronicle articles of interest:

Re:A couple SF Chronicle articles (5, Insightful)

tb3 (313150) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164040)

Interesting, the first article states that, now that he has been released on bail, the U.S. attorney has 10 to 20 days to indict him. Does this mean that if they don't do anything after 20 days he walks? If so, would this be a convenient face-saving measure for the government?

Re:A couple SF Chronicle articles (5, Funny)

Chakat (320875) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164053)

I love this quote from the first article you linked to:
Book publishers say they need a tough law like the Digital Millennium Copyright Act or they'll never be able to make money selling electronic books. If programmers are allowed to crack eBook encryption, the next Napster-style trading system will be exchanging copies of "Moby Dick" instead of songs by Moby, they warn.
Uhh...someone better tell the AAP that "Moby Dick" is public domain, something that is legal to copy under the law

Re:A couple SF Chronicle articles (1)

Johnny5000 (451029) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164119)

Even if it wasnt public domain...

I can just see the kids in school talking about the rad new books they got last night from the internet. "Last night I downloaded the Moby Dick!" "Cool! Send it to me!"
I'd give them about 3 pages into it before they gave up.

It sounds like a big conspiracy to make reading the coolest thing to do. Maybe it's a low-budget way to suppliment the school system.

-J5K

Party (5, Interesting)

cnkeller (181482) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163994)

Probably only applicable to those of us in Silicon Valley, but is anyone else interested in taking him out for a beer and some decent food? Show him the parts of the US that don't suck....

Re:Party (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2164044)

i'm a naturalized us citizen who came to the US in 1977, and i live in the bay area now. i was thinking of bringing him some russian food/candies from a local store, but i'd be glad to pitch in to take the guy out. if anyone wants to coordinate dinner / beer, please post here.

-hjr

Re:Party (1)

Perrin-GoldenEyes (4296) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164106)

If you're trying to show him things that don't suck, I hope you're not planning on getting him American beer! Guinness aught to do the trick.

I wish I wasn't on the east coast. I'd love to join in taking him out for a beer and some good chow. I hope you manage to pull it off.

Re:Party (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2164110)

Oh please, he's been to Vegas, surely he sees everything doesn't suck. And the food was probably better in jail than in Russia.

Thanks to mega-corps, and the DMCA... (1)

Bimkins (242641) | more than 12 years ago | (#2163999)

The quote at the bottom of the /. page somehow seems appropriate right now.
"Tell me what to think!!!"

Amazing victory (2, Insightful)

MAXOMENOS (9802) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164000)

This is an amazing victory for Sklyarov. $50,000 bail is a lot of money, I agree ... but this is peanuts for an alleged criminal who poses a substantial flight risk (he does, after all, live in Russia). I'm personally hoping that this says good things for the judge's attitudes towards Sklyarov and his alleged "crime."

(Usual disclaimers: IANAL etc.)

ds d g dftgh rsdt (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2164003)

Russian Programmer Arrested at Hacker Convention Is Freed on $50,000 Bail
By Brian Bergstein Associated Press Writer
Published: Aug 6, 2001

SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) - A Russian computer programmer charged with distributing a program to crack encrypted software was released on $50,000 bond Monday and ordered to stay in Northern California while he awaits trial.
With dozens of protesters gathered outside the federal courthouse, Dmitry Sklyarov made his first court appearance in San Jose since being arrested July 16 and charged with violating the 1998 Digital Millennium Copyright Act.

Sklyarov, 26, is thought to be the first person to face criminal prosecution under the act, and his case has generated international protests.

An interpreter explained the procedures to Sklyarov, who speaks halting English. Prosecutors and defense attorney Joseph Burton agreed on the bond conditions.

The bond is being paid for by Sklyarov's company, and he has been turned over to the custody of a Russian-American software engineer who lives in Cupertino.

The case concerns Adobe Systems' eBook Reader, software that lets publishers impose strong restrictions on the use of books they sell online. While working for Elcomsoft Co. Ltd. of Moscow, Sklyarov came up with ways around those restrictions - so electronic books could be transferred from one computer to another or used in text-to-speech programs, for example.

Such programs are legal in Russia but banned under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. Adobe complained to the FBI, and agents arrested Sklyarov in Las Vegas, where he had traveled to speak at a computer security convention.

Sklyarov's supporters say there is no evidence anyone has used his program to violate copyrights on electronic books. Adobe dropped its support of the case on July 23.

Sklyarov could face five years in prison and a $500,000 fine if convicted.

---

On the Net:

Sklyarov supporters: http://freesklyarov.org

Adobe Systems: http://www.adobe.com

Prosecutors: http://www.usaondca.com

AP-ES-08-06-01 1454EDT

Good. (5, Interesting)

r_j_prahad (309298) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164009)

A bit off-topic, but an article in my local paper this morning tells of the sentencing of an attempted rapist who beat the living crap out of his would-be victim, knocking out several of her teeth and putting her in the hospital for a week. He got two-and-a-half years. He'll probably serve only half of that. But Dimitry could get five years for his e-book program.

The message our lawmakers are sending to hackers is clear; leave the copy protection alone and instead just beat the f*cking shit out of the copyright holder.

I hope Dimitry flees. There won't be any justice for him here.

Re:Good. (2, Funny)

jmv (93421) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164039)

The message our lawmakers are sending to hackers is clear; leave the copy protection alone and instead just beat the f*cking shit out of the copyright holder.

Hey, that calls for an "Open Beating" project!

Re:Good. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2164086)

I sent a Thank-You card to the guy who raped you.

I sent concentration camp footage to Americas Funniest Home Videos.

Your kid is dead.

Anal Cunt rules.

Re:Good. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2164114)

The victim in that rape you mention probably wasn't wealthy enough for anyone to give a damn about her.[*]


[*]cynical age we live in, eh?

The problem with the Reuters story... (5, Insightful)

kiwimate (458274) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164021)

...is that it doesn't clarify the real difference between the legality in Russia and the illegality in the States -- i.e. that the reason you're allowed to do this in Russia is to make backups for personal use.

Overall, I think it's a reasonable story, and not slanted. But the average reader (side-note: how much do we think this will be picked up by the mass-circulation papers?) will end up thinking that this is a symptom of the decline of the Russian ex-empire in that it's legal to pirate CDs there. The reality, of course, is the reverse: it's legal to make a fair-use backup for your own purposes, as opposed to out-and-out piracy, and that is what Sklyarov's software addresses.

How is this possible? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2164024)

I thought the USA nuked Japan from the Earth about 60 years ago. How is this guy alive?

Make a run for the border... (1)

Robber Baron (112304) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164026)

If I was him I'd say "screw the friggin US (non)justice system" and head for either Canada or Mexico just as fast as I could. Maybe Mexico would be better because they have direct flights to Cuba and fakes for just about everything (including passports). Unfortunately, this would be another nail in the coffin of any hope we have of seeing the DMCA overturned. Glad I'm not in his shoes right now... Hobson's choice, right? How'd you like that on your shoulders?

Fly Dmitri, Fly!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2164033)

Don't think you are going to get Justice, you will get only the Law, and that's against you. Your employers will lose $50000 , you will never be able to set foot in the USA (as if you were to, again). But that's small fish.

We'll be sorry to lose a test of the law, but we'll understand you skin is more precious to you. Fly and e-mail us from Russia! You have nothing to win here, and a whole lot to lose.

His visa has probably expired (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2164034)

Maybe the INS will do him a favor deport him.

Tobin came home today.. (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2164048)

Tobin came home today.. Why aren't I surprised?

Innocent until proven guilty (1)

JasonVergo (101331) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164058)

> Sklyarov wrote a program that allows people who purchase books in > digital form and use Adobe Systems Inc.'s eBook Reader to make and > transfer copies of the book -- legal under Russian law, but a > violation of the DMCA. > What ever happened to being innocent until proven guilty? It has yet to be determined what Sklyarov did was a violation of the DMCA! This is what we are up against - bad reporting! A better article: http://www.wired.com/news/politics/0,1283,45870,00 .html"

A useful legal decision has already been made! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2164066)

check this out [cnn.com] on CNN [cnn.com] . Gun victims cannot sue the makers of guns...

LA Times (2, Informative)

Amazing Quantum Man (458715) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164071)

Front Page article in the LA Times [latimes.com] about E-Books and Dmitry. Had a great picture of one of the protests on an inside continuation page (pic not available on line, bummer!).

LA Times article on the bail. [latimes.com]

Re:LA Times (1)

Amazing Quantum Man (458715) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164088)

Whoops! Forgot to mention that the bail article even remembered to say that the software is LEGAL IN RUSSIA. Of course, they put it way down at the end!

So he can't leave the STATE of Northern California (3, Funny)

Benjamin Shniper (24107) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164095)

Is this a precursor to the widely expected split of California into North and South? Where is the boundary between these (soon to be two) states that Dimitry cannot cross?

Props to him on his bold defense of international freedom of speech.

-Ben

Employee Insurance (2)

isa-kuruption (317695) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164111)

If he was really a valuable employee, his employer would have put out an insurance policy on him... especially for stuff like this. Heck, my autoclub provides me a $5000 bond for my $12/yr membership fee.

Continuous Updates (2)

zpengo (99887) | more than 12 years ago | (#2164122)

Check Sklyarov's progress here [slant-six.org]

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