Jeremy Hammond, speaking to Guardian reporter Ed Pilkington just one day before he was sentenced to the maximum sentence of 10 years for exposing the spying of StratFor, a private corporate spying firm that often works with US intelligence agencies said:
"I knew when I started out with Anonymous that being put in jail and having a lengthy sentence was a possibility. Given the nature of the targets I was going after I knew I would upset a lot of powerful people."
The Federal Court for the Southern District of New York was packed on with supporters, journalists and activists who see Jeremy Hammond's actions as a form of civil disobedience, motivated by a desire to protest and expose the secret activities of private intelligence corporations. In his sentencing statement, Hammond said:
"The acts of civil disobedience and direct action that I am being sentenced for today are in line with the principles of community and equality that have guided my life. I hacked into dozens of high profile corporations and government institutions, understanding very clearly that what I was doing was against the law, and that my actions could land me back in federal prison. But I felt that I had an obligation to use my skills to expose and confront injustice--and to bring the truth to light. Could I have achieved the same goals through legal means? I have tried everything from voting petitions to peaceful protest and have found that those in power do not want the truth to be exposed. When we speak truth to power we are ignored at best and brutally suppressed at worst. We are confronting a power structure that does not respect its own system of checks and balances, never mind the rights of it's own citizens or the international community."