By Eduard Kovaks
After alleged Stratfor hacker Jeremy Hammond was denied bail, Anonymous hacktivists and his supporters have asked the judge assigned to oversee the case to step down because of a “direct conflict of interest.” The judge has refused to do so. Anonymous argued that Judge Loretta Preska’s husband was working for a Stratfor client at the time of the hack, so she shouldn’t be allowed to handle the case.
However, according to Democracy Now, the federal judge has refused to recurs herself from the trial.
“You have the judge; her husband has been hacked. Her husband’s email is accessible and she is sitting on the case of the very person who they allege hacked into that email account,” Michael Ratner, president emeritus of the Center for Constitutional Rights, told the publication.
Ratner added, “Well, the rules seem to me very clear in federal court, that if there’s any appearance of impropriety, appearance of a closeness to the case, that basically you have to recuse yourself from being a judge in the case. You have to do it automatically, even if the defendant doesn’t make a motion.”
Jeremy Hammond, an alleged member of the LulzSec hacker group, was arrested back in March after Sabu turned him and the other members of the collective over to law enforcement.