Barrett Brown Sentencing
Journalist and activist Barrett Brown is facing up to eight-and-a-half years in jail for his part in a cyber-attack and threatening an FBI agent and his children YouTube

Journalist and activist Barrett Brown has has his sentening delayed once again by a Dallas court.

Brown was due to be sentenced on Tuesday, 16 December for his part in a cyber-attack on intelligence firm Stratfor, and for making a threat against an FBI agent and his children in a YouTube video.

However after lengthy evidence from the prosecution and the submission of huge troves of new evidence the judge adjourned sentencing until 22 January with the court saying it has "to much to review to decide".

Brown has been in jail for over two years since he was arrested in September 2012 after posting a video on YouTube in which he threatened to "ruin the life" of FBI agent Robert Smith and "look into his f**king kids".

Brown had initially faced much more serious charges related to his posting of a link to a file containing stolen credit card details from the Stratfor hack, which brought with them a maximum sentence of over 100 years in prison.

However, in April the journalist pleaded guilty to three charges which carried with them a maximum sentence of eight-and-a-half years.


Brown pleaded guilty to one charge of being an "accessory after the fact in the unauthorised access to a protected computer" which relates to his part in the cyber-attack on Stratfor, which was carried out by Jeremy Hammond who is currently serving a 10-year sentence for the attack.

Brown worked with Hammond through his Project PM website which took leaked information from hackers and groups like Anonymous, analysing it with a specific focus on private security companies and their relationships with the US government.

In this case, Brown offered to communicate with Stratfor's chief executive on behalf of Hammond to see if the executive had any "reasonable requests" to redact any of the information that was stolen.

Brown has continued to work as a journalist over the last two years, including a weekly column for D Magazine and work in the Guardian, Huffington Post, and Vanity Fair.

His case has been seen by many as a test on the nature of press freedom in the United States with Brown receiving support from multiple advocacy groups including the Electronic Frontier Foundation.

Brown pleaded guilty to a charge of obstructing a search warrant (a charge which was also levelled against his mother) for hiding his laptops which contained journalistic sources and work product, including a book-in-progress.

The Free Barrett Brown support group said before the sentencing: "The First Amendment is understood as protecting reporters from revealing confidential information or sources, but we are seeing our constitutional values eroded by DOJ investigations into national security leaks. The FBI raid which led to these charges was based on false information, and there was no crime to investigate."