Hunter Moore, the so-called “revenge porn” progenitor, made his second court appearance on charges that he hired co-defendant Charles “Gary” Evens to access email accounts of five women in order to find and post their nude photos on his now-defunct website, IsAnyoneUp?
With his parents in tow, Moore was arraigned on and sheepishly plead not-guilty to fifteen counts of violations of 18 U.S.C. §§ 1030 (unauthorized access to a protected computer, popularly referred to as ‘hacking’), 18 U.S.C. § 1028A (aggravated identity theft), 18 U.S.C. § 371 (conspiracy), and 18 U.S.C. § 2 (aiding and abetting). His co-defendant, Charles Robert Evens, entered a not-guilty plea in January and was released on $60,000 bond.
In attendance at Moore’s arraignment was Dr. Charlotte Laws, widely credited with amassing the evidence and public pressure on law enforcement to act.
At his initial appearance in January, Moore was ordered to assist Federal agents in shutting down his online accounts and websites. Moore is prohibited from having access to the internet, a computer, or a cell phone. Moore was released from custody in January after posting a $100,000 unsecured appearance bond — that is, he and his parents have agreed to pay the government $100,000 if Moore skips town.
After the hearing, I waited outside for Moore, along with a camera crew from Inside Edition. When Moore spotted us, he sprinted away, holding his backwards hat down, while his lawyer laughed.
Who is Charlie “Gary” Evens?
Little is known about Moore’s co-defendant, Charlie Evens. What is known paints a picture that contrasts greatly with Moore. Where Moore welcomed his status as an internet villain, Evens is a more sympathetic defendant — although that’s not difficult.
A resident of the Los Angeles area and 2006 graduate of Notre Dame High School, he was a “skipper” on Disneyland’s jungle cruise ride before working for Deluxe Entertainment Studios as a Digital Asset Manager. On the side, Evens produced and hosted a short-lived live comedy show (the creatively-named “Charlies’ Comedy Show“) featuring moderately well-known comedians.
Evens was convicted of driving under the influence in 2012 and remains on probation.
In May 2012, the Village Voice described in detail allegations that a “Gary Jones” was using social engineering tactics to access email accounts, and that Hunter Moore would post nude photos from those accounts. “Gary,” in a moment of empathy and self-pity, apologized to one victim and told her that he had just been arrested for his “3rd DUI” and was struggling with sobriety. The email address disclosed in the Village Voice article appears to match that in the indictment against Moore and Evens.
Moore, responding to allegations that the sources of his nude catalog were more than just spurned ex-lovers, told the Village Voice:
“I’ve had tons of hackers give me shit,” he told me over the phone, insisting that Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act of 1996, the same federal law that has shielded his site from prosecution all along, absolves him of legal responsibility. [...] “It always comes back on the hacker. I’m not gonna lie. I’ve paid people for content. I don’t give a fuck. You can say that. If I’ve paid for content, they have to submit the same [way] as the user. It would all fall back on the user.”
The law Moore cited in his armchair lawyering, Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, generally protects websites and their owners from liability for content submitted by users. However, Section 230 is expressly inapplicable to Federal criminal law, and is not a license-by-virtue-of-website to commit any criminal act under the sun.
The trial of Evens is scheduled to begin on March 25 before the Hon. Dolly M. Gee. There was some confusion over the date of Moore’s trial, but was tentatively set for April 8. I plan to attend and report from the trial. Moore has retained Robert M. Holley and Evens is represented by a Federal public defender. The public documents in the case are available here and here.