March 17th, 2004, 06:28 PM
Chris Wiest's Conviction Over Turned!
I'm not going to get into a lot of details about the background of this case, but those of you that have been following AntiOnline for the past 5 years or so may remember the story of Chris Wiest.
He faced a court martial by the Air Force for, and yes, you're reading this right, supposedly running an Undernet linked IRC Server from his barracks, and hacking into several computers in order to be able to do it.
AntiOnline ran a huge story that was covered by dozens of media outlets about the case. We had interviews with him, and his defense attorneys from the Air Force. We also reviewed case evidence, that we posted information on as well.
Because of AntiOnline's reporting, and conversations that we had with the prosecutor in the case, Wiest's charge of running the Undernet IRC Server was dropped. However, he was unfortunately still convicted on the hacking charges.
I certainly don't have a reputation of being one that goes and tries to help "defend hackers", or that condones any hacking activity whatsoever. However, after looking at the evidence in the case, and of the charges that were filed against him, it was my opinion then, and is still my opinion to this day, that Chris Wiest didn't hack into anything, nor did he have the knowledge base to do it even if he wanted to.
Well, today I was digging through my daily influx of e-mail when I came across this one. Five years later, Cadet Wiest's conviction has been overturned.
It seems that justice finally prevailed:
It's been a while (5 years) since you + Kelvin ran the story on my case. By way of an update, the Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces today overturned the court martial (on counsel grounds -- they didn't address any of the computer issues). Here is the link.
Again, thank you for your help in the matter. I'm sure its moot at this point, and double jeapardy has attached, so they can't prosecute me on any of the larger offenses, but you did the right thing. I did not break into those systems. If only there was some way for Cordova to get his...
Next time I'm in the burgh (which should be next weekend), if your available, I owe ya a beer.
So at any rate, I figured that those of you that remember the case, would appreciate knowing about the happy ending!