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Sony Finds GeoHot PSN Account, PS3 Hacker in South America


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187w ago - Update: Some more legal doc updates have now surfaced, which include GeoHot's laywers response refuting Sony's claims (via [Register or Login to view links]) that the "blickmaniac" PSN account belongs to him.

[Register or Login to view links] is also reproting that GeoHot's PS3 SCEJ manuals remained sealed, that he couldn't have known of SCEA to set up a PSN account and that the PlayStation 3 serial numbers don't match.

Today many sites are reporting that Sony has allegedly found George Hotz's PSN account under the nickname of blickmanic which would subject him to their TOS, that the PS3 hacker is currently [Register or Login to view links] or [Register or Login to view links] in South America, and finally that GeoHot may have intentionally removed integral components of his impounded hard drives prior to delivery.

To quote from [Register or Login to view links]: "After Magistrate Judge Spero ordered an inspection of Hotz's devices and ordered Hotz to appear at a deposition in California, SCEA learned that Hotz had deliberately removed integral components of his impounded hard drives prior to delivering them to a third party neutral and that Hotz is now in South America, an excuse for why he will not immediately provide the components of his hard drives as requested by the neutral," the [Register or Login to view links] read.

In the understatement of the year, the opposition stated: "Hotz's attempts to dodge this Court's authority raise very serious questions."

To quote from [Register or Login to view links] and [Register or Login to view links]: "It's safe to say things are looking decidedly dicey for poor old George. Sony is now also claiming that he lied to the court about having a PlayStation Network account.

"Hotz identified four PS3 Systems in his possession. He explained that he had purchased one of these consoles new in February 2010 and provided the serial number for that console. SCEA used that serial number to determine that on February 25, 2010, Hotz purchased the PS3 System at a Gamestop store just miles from his home.

"SCEA's records show that the same PS3 System was used on March 10, 2010 to create a PSN account under the user name 'blickmanic.' The IP address associated with the registration is located in Glen Rock, New Jersey, where Hotz lives."

Then, more evidence regarding his PSN account was [Register or Login to view links]: "Hotz's ownership of the "blickmanic" account is further supported by the fact that an Internet search of the user name "blickmanic" reveals a posting discussing the jailbreaking of cellular phones - Hotz's original "claim to fame." Bricker Decl., 7, Exh. F ( "Just curious what people would pay for exclusive rights to this solution. [Motorola] Tracfone W175g unlocked and debranded. PM me." )

As discussed above, to create his PSN account, Hotz was required to first agree to the terms of the PSN User Agreement and thus he is clearly subject to personal jurisdiction in California. It is well established that a valid and enforceable forum selection clause operates as consent to personal jurisdiction in a designated forum.

Sony continued that even without his PSN account breach evidence, they already have enough evidence against him:

Although Hotz's PSN account registration clearly establishes jurisdiction, even without it, SCEA has shown the necessary minimum contacts between Hotz and California."

To quote from [Register or Login to view links]: "SCEA learned that Hotz had deliberately removed integral components of his impounded hard drives prior to delivering them to a third party neutral and that Hotz is now in South America, an excuse for why he will not immediately provide the components of his hard drives as requested by the neutral," Sony says.

"Hotz's attempts to dodge this Court's authority raise very serious questions."

Update: Stewart Kellar, Hotz's attorney, has [Register or Login to view links] saying the missing hard drive parts have now been delivered.

"The 'integral components' SCEA is talking about are stock controller cards, not the hard drives themselves," Kellar told IGN in an e-mail. "The neutral subsequently had to explain to SCEA the form and function of hard drive controller cards. Those controller cards have since been provided to the neutral so the point is moot."

Finally, to quote from [Register or Login to view links]: "Apparently, I have fled the country. ROFL

Factually, it's true I'm in South America, on a vacation I've had planned and paid for since November. I mean, it is Spring break; hacking isn't my life. Rest assured that not a dime of legal defense money would ever go toward something like this. And of course Townsend loves the idea of painting me as an international fugitive. I have been in contact with my lawyers almost every day; I would not let the case suffer. That said, I also won't let this ridiculous lawsuit run my life either. Then the fearmongerers win.

I will be back, I hear it's hard to come by the Xperia Play down here."




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Comments 262 Comments - Go to Forum Thread »

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PS3 News's Avatar
#262 - PS3 News - 186w ago
Some more legal doc updates (courtesy of [Register or Login to view links]) are attached below, which include GeoHot's laywers response refuting Sony's claims that the "blickmaniac" PSN account belongs to him.

jmthiphop's Avatar
#261 - jmthiphop - 187w ago
i think he has been already employed by Sony's Security division.

pig098's Avatar
#260 - pig098 - 187w ago
Quote Originally Posted by B4rtj4h View Post
That was not George that made that account... it was me! I was visiting him...

Not really much to stand on there... who is gonna claim that it was George himself that made the account? Maybe his friend made it -.-?

Yea... i bet they use the same logic in other court cases... "i know you found the evidence under my bed, but i am telling ya... it was my friend" Come on dude...
Quote Originally Posted by geowrian View Post
I'm really not trying to be mean here, but you have no idea what you are talking about. In particular...

Ummm you are wrong. If Sony does win, Geo can get some jail time.. they are all in the documents.

But i agree with you on one thing... the case is still very early.

What i really find funny is that this guy is having a time of his life in South America with all that money he received for "legal fees".

geowrian's Avatar
#259 - geowrian - 187w ago
Quote Originally Posted by zagan View Post
Geohot won't get out of this and will get wiped on the floor, that is the end result of this court case. His lawyers are clutching at straws trying to get out of this case but it won't work.

I'm really not trying to be mean here, but you have no idea what you are talking about. In particular:

1) This is still in the early stages. they are still in the discovery stage, with a neutral party facilitating the transfer of items and information. I hardly think that qualifies "His lawyers are clutching at straws trying to get out of this case..."

2) I'm not quite sure how jail time comes into the equation here - he was not arrested nor accused of committing a crime at this point. He is being sued. You can't go to jail just for being sued. Actually, anybody can be sued for anything...it really doesn't mean anything until the judge makes a final ruling (and then appeals can kick in).

3) This is a civil suit, so there is no "fee" for him to pay, other than normal court fees. Beyond that, he has to pay his lawyer's fees, but that's a business contract, not a judicial fee. Additionally, you can't go to jail (in the US) for an inability to pay. If he has the ability to pay and a court order to do so, that's different. But if he cannot afford to pay it, he's not legally required to pay it over personal needs. Actually, if SCEA wins and the court orders a huge sum to pay, he could just claim bankruptcy and likely get it discharged. Then SCEA can't even come after him.

4) By that logic, there's really no reason to support anybody challenging a DCMA suit. I agree that the DMCA is horrible and should be rewritten, but that doesn't mean money going towards defending people accused of violating it is being wasted. Maybe there are better DMCA-related causes, but personally, I want to see how this plays out.

Neo Cyrus's Avatar
#258 - Neo Cyrus - 187w ago
Typical Sony and their "Lose millions to make thousands and scare some people" tactics.

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