Barely Legally

Confessions of a Moot Court Bailiff

You Got Sentenced

Adam Steinbaugh goes full law nerd on the Revenge Porn (I hate that term) industry’s first prison sentence. It couldn’t happen to a nicer guy.

Kevin Bollaert was sentenced by a San Diego court to 18 years in prison following his February conviction on twenty-seven counts of extortion and identity theft. Bollaert was the chief operator of YouGotPosted.com (later uGotPosted.com), which published the nude photos of over ten thousand men and women, almost uniformly without their permission.

Bollaert, with his partner Eric Chanson, monetized his site with both advertisements and a more devious plan. He launched ChangeMyReputation.com, which ‘advertised’ on YouGotPosted as an independent service which could remove the photos from YouGotPosted in exchange for a few hundred dollars. […]

Kevin Bollaert is the first revenge porn site operator to be convicted and sent to prison. Hunter Moore, widely viewed as the progenitor of revenge porn sites, will be sentenced in June after taking a plea deal on CFAA charges. Craig Brittain, the patron saint of harnessing revenge porn as a means of extortion, somehow escaped with only a light bruising on the wrist from the FTC, despite having the most bizarre (and malicious) plot.

This is great news, and hopefully this is the first of many jail sentences for people like this. Al Franken would like to see a world like that, too. However, Steinbaugh isn’t just reporting, he’s analyzing. He examines two potential routes for Bollaert’s appeal, and actually finds one of them a probable winner. Which sucks. We’re both left hoping that the appellate court finds any excuse to keep Bollaert in jail, even if bad facts make for bad laws.