Aaron Swartz, the 24-year-old co-creator of popular Internet community Reddit, has been charged with stealing data from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and faces up to 35 years in prison if convicted.
The charges against Swartz include computer fraud, unlawfully obtaining information, wire fraud and recklessly damaging a protected computer.
In a press release first picked up by The New York Times, a U.S. attorney said Swartz entered a restricted computer closet and used his access to steal unspecified information from the university’s archive of academic papers.
“Stealing is stealing whether you use a computer command or a crowbar, and whether you take documents, data or dollars,” the release said.
Swartz also blogs for The Huffington Post as founder the activist group Demand Progress, which promotes Internet policy reforms.
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