Swartz's father says US govt killed son

Last updated 13:13 16/01/2013
Aaron Swartz
Reuters
INTERNET ACTIVIST: Aaron Swartz's funeral was held today in Chicago.

Related Links

Swartz Prosecution Anti-hacking law

Relevant offers

Digital Living

Emoji bug causing iPhones to crash Wellington woman made hundreds of online threats to victim she didn't know 2016's most common passwords revealed: Are you using them? Zuckerberg denies stealing VR technology New app re-trains the brain to avoid unhealthy foods Apple wisely chooses the do-it-yourself route for TV Fingerprint data at risk in 'peace' photos The Irish comedian, Twitter and the Dunedin wedding I chatted with 3 Gen Z girls about how they use their mobiles, and it was mind-blowing Parris Goebel to help make new video for Elton John's Bennie and the Jets

Internet freedom activist Aaron Swartz was "killed by the government," his father told mourners during his son's funeral in suburban Chicago.

Swartz, who help create Reddit and RSS, the technology behind blogs, podcasts and other web-based subscription services, was found dead on Friday in his New York apartment.

He was facing federal charges that alleged he illegally gained access to millions of articles from a Massachusetts Institute of Technology computer archive.

Robert Swartz said during the service in Highland Park that his son was "hounded by the government, and MIT refused him," the Chicago Sun-Times reported.

"He was killed by the government, and MIT betrayed all of its basic principles," he said.

Swartz, 26, was facing charges that carried a maximum penalty of decades in prison. His trial was scheduled to begin in April.

US Attorney Carmen Ortiz had no comment about Robert Swartz's remarks, Ortiz spokeswoman Christina DiIorio-Sterling said.

Swartz's family also lashed out against prosecutors on Saturday, saying the death was "the product of a criminal justice system rife with intimidation and prosecutorial overreach."

Swartz's case highlighted society's uncertain, evolving view of how to treat people who break into computer systems and share data not to enrich themselves, but to make it available to others.

Tim Berners-Lee, who developed the World Wide Web, and Harvard law professor Lawrence Lessig, director of the Safra Center for Ethics where Swartz was once a fellow, both spoke at the funeral.

"We felt the indictment was nonsense and that he would be acquitted," Berners-Lee told the newspaper after the service.

Ad Feedback

- AP

Special offers

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content