In the sextortion case of Miss Teen USA Cassidy Wolf, a 19-year-old man admitted Tuesday to taking over the webcams of several women, including Wolf, to download nude images of them before blackmailing them for more.
Jared James Abraham, 19, of Temecula, Calif., could spend up to 33 months in federal prison after pleading guilty to four crimes that included unauthorized access of a computer and extortion, the Los Angeles Times reported
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One of his victims was Wolf, a 2012 graduate of Great Oak High School in Temecula who won the Miss Teen USA pageant this summer. She was the first victim to report the cyber hacking and sextortion plot to police.
Abrahams and Wolf were in the same graduating class, the Press-Enterprise reported.
He enrolled in college and was studying computer science, according to court records.
The Press-Enterprise said Abrahams hacked into computers belonging to at least a dozen young women and used their webcams to obtain nude images of them without their knowledge. Then he got in touch with his victims using email accounts belonging to others, and threatened to post the images unless the women sent nude videos or photos, or agreed to log onto Skype and do what he demanded, court records say. Two girls disrobed.
In an email to Wolfe, a person later identified as Abrahams told the beauty queen that the consequences would be severe if she did not heed his demands. “Here’s what’s going to happen!” he wrote, according to a federal complaint obtained by the Press-Enterprise. “Either you do one of the things listed below or I upload these pics and a lot more … on all your accounts for everybody to see and your dream of being a model will be transformed into a pornstar.”
Abrahams’ attorney said his client has autism, the Times reported, but added that was not an excuse for this behavior. The paper said Abrahams was charged with changing Wolf’s Twitter account photo to a half-naked image of her. He followed that up by sending her two nude images that were taken via webcam inside her home.
The FBI raided Abrahams’ Temecula home in June, seizing computers, hardware, and more.
Abrahams admitted to hacking into 100 to 150 computers, according to the Times.
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