Two California men get prison terms in pro poker ‘sextortion’ scheme

Second Annual Ante Up For Africa Poker Tournament - Arrivals

Two California men who pleaded guilty to hacking into the email account of a professional poker player and trying to extort him with naked pictures found there have been sentenced to prison terms, federal prosecutors said on Monday.

Prosecutors say Tyler Schrier, 23, and Keith James Hudson, 39, took part in a so-called “sextortion” scheme targeting poker pro Joe Sebok in the fall of 2010, threatening to post the pictures and intimate emails online if he and other victims did not pay them hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Sebok said during a sentencing hearing for the two men in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles that he and the other victims had seen their lives “altered and shattered in irreparable ways” by the crime, which damaged his ability to earn a living as a professional poker player.

“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,” Sebok said, according to U.S. Attorney’s spokesman Thom Mrozek.

“Without belaboring the point too much, it was a nightmare, and one that I was forced to live through with millions of people watching,” Sebok said, according to Mrozek.

The other victims of the scheme were identified in court documents only by their initials. None of the victims made the payments to the extortionists, prosecutors said.

Schrier was sentenced to 42 months in prison after pleading guilty to conspiracy, extortion and unauthorized access to a protected computer. He had faced a maximum sentence of 17 years in prison if convicted at trial.

Hudson was sentenced to two years in prison following his guilty plea to unauthorized access to a protected computer for purposes of financial gain. Hudson could have been sentenced to five years behind bars if found guilty at trial.

A third defendant, 22-year-old Ryder Finney, has pleaded guilty to conspiracy in connection with the scheme and will be sentenced later this year in federal court in Philadelphia. He faces a maximum of five years in prison.

According to charging documents, Hudson obtained emails and intimate photographs from Sebok’s account and sent them to Schrier, who threatened to post the materials online unless he was provided with money or credits in online poker accounts.

Prosecutors said that prior to the Sebok case, Schrier had extorted more than $26,000 from professional poker players in exchange for agreeing not to reveal information regarding their online poker activities.

In 2012, while free on bond in the Sebok case, Schrier illegally accessed two email accounts to steal some $4,000 from online poker accounts, prosecutors said.

 



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Brooklyn man charged in roommate's stabbing death

A Brooklyn man accused of violently stabbing his roommate to death on Monday is in police custody and faces murder charges.

International

Dinosaurs could have survived asteroid strike

It turns out there is a good and a bad time for the planet to be hit by a meteor, and dinosaurs were just unlucky.…

National

OkCupid admits to Facebook-style experimenting on customers

By Sarah McBrideSAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - OkCupid, a top U.S. matchmaking website, intentionally mismatched users to test its technology, the IAC/InterActive Corp service said on…

Local

MTA fares still increasing 4 percent in newly…

The agency said the 4 percent increases, previously announced in December, will remain steady even as the MTA deals with increasing labor costs.

Movies

Interview: Brendan Gleeson on the way 'Calvary' depicts…

Brendan Gleeson talks about how his new film "Calvary" began over drinks and how his character here is the opposite of the lead in "The Guard."

Movies

'Get on Up' producer Mick Jagger on the…

Mick Jagger, a producer on the James Brown biopic "Get on Up," talks about the time had to tell the singer some bad news and his favorite JB record.

Television

'Glee' star Lea Michele to appear on 'Sons…

"Glee" star Lea Michele has been confirmed as a guest star in the final season of "Sons of Anarchy."

Television

TV watch list, Monday, July 28: 'The Bachelorette'…

See Andi Dorfman make her big choice on tonight's 'Bachelorette' finale.

MLB

Angelo Cataldi: Ryan Howard deserves better from Phillies

Just last week, Ryan Howard endured the embarrassment of a benching that was inevitable, and yet still shocking.

NFL

Larry Donnell has inside track in Giants tight…

Little-known Larry Donnell of Grambling State currently has the inside track, as the second-year player has received the bulk of the first-team reps.

NFL

Computer to Jets: Start Michael Vick over Geno…

Jets general manager John Idzik says the choice of who starts between second-year quarterback Geno Smith and veteran Michael Vick will be a “Jets decision.”

MLB

Yankees looking to trade for Josh Willingham: Report

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Sunday the Yankees are interested in Twins outfielder Josh Willingham.

Travel

Glasgow: Hey, hey, the gangs aren't here

This European city has done a good job getting rid of its more violent residents and revitalizing with artists.

Education

Babson College tops list of best colleges for…

Money magazine has just released its inaugural list of "The Best Colleges for Your Money" -- and the answers have surprised many. Babson College, which…

Education

NYC teens learn how to develop apps during…

Through a program sponsored by CampInteractive, the high schoolers designed their own community-focused apps.

Tech

The Ministry of Silly Walks app is both…

Monty Python have dug into their back catalogue for cash-ins once more, but with the Ministry of Silly Walks app, they've made something that's fun too.