If you were to plot a "sextortion" scheme to milk people for money in exchange for keeping their dirty photos secret, would you pick World Poker Tour players?
Pros with the L.A.-based poker series were indeed the targets of a plot that had three defendants plundering nude photos and then offering to keep them under wraps for cash, federal authorities said today. And so ...
... two of the three were sentenced today to federal prison terms:
Tyler Schrier, 23, of Menlo Park, got 42 months behind bars for conspiracy, extortion and unauthorized access to a computer, the U.S. Attorney's Office in L.A. says.
Keith James Hudson, 39, of San Jose got two years for "unauthorized access to a protected computer to obtain information for purposes of private financial gain," according to a statement from the office.
He admitted to hacking a player's computer, stealing nude photos and plotting to extort players, feds said.. Schrier admitted to getting $26,000 in extortion cash in a previous case and to hacking $4,000 from online poker accounts, according to prosecutors.
A third defendant, 22-year-old Ryder Finney of Philadelphia, faces as many as five years behind bars after pleading guilty to conspiracy, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office. He's set to be sentenced later this year.
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The main target of this latest case was World Poker Tour's Joe Sebok, who told the court that, despite keeping his wallet closed, the distribution of his nude pictures cost him a lot career-wise:
In short, I was no longer able to maintain my then-current level of participation in the poker industry, representing the brands that I had been previously, as well as greatly destroying my ability to do so with new companies moving forward. Without belaboring the point too much, it was a nightmare, and one that I was forced to live through with millions of people watching.