SANTA ANA, Calif. (AP) — A 19-year-old computer science student has agreed to plead guilty to hacking the computers of Miss Teen USA and other women as part of a scheme to have them send him nude photographs or undress on camera for him, authorities said Thursday.
City News Service reported that Jared James Abrahams agreed earlier this month to plead guilty to one count of online “sextortion.”
U.S. Attorney spokesman Thom Mrozek said Abrahams is scheduled to appear in court in Santa Ana on Monday to schedule a date to enter his plea. Under terms of his agreement, prosecutors will recommend he be sentenced to as much as 33 months in prison and fined $1 million.
Authorities say the Temecula man hacked into the computers of Miss Teen USA Cassidy Wolf and several other women from various states and countries. He would then place malicious software on their computers that would allow him to control the webcams and surreptitiously photograph them.
According to court documents filed in the case, Abrahams would then send the victims anonymous emails telling them he had downloaded nude photos of them and would publish the images on social media sites if they didn’t send him additional pictures or undress for him. If they complied he promised to destroy the images.
According to an FBI affidavit, he told Wolf, who was an acquaintance, “your dream of being a model will be transformed into a pornstar.”
While some victims complied, Wolf contacted the FBI.
Authorities say one victim from Ireland emailed Abrahams, saying she was 17.
According to court documents, a Canadian woman also stripped for him and women from Southern California, Baltimore and Russia sent him photos.
Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.