The Internet has become a very useful tool for people in Tennessee and elsewhere. Not only does it help people accomplish their work goals, but it also lets people connect to others across the globe. However, with the good comes some bad. The Internet has also opened up a number of new criminal offenses that can penalize those who are accused of using the Internet in a wrongful way. Unfortunately for one man, a former Mitt Romney intern, such an accusation was made against him recently. He is now facing federal charges.

Of the possible computer crimes, the former intern is being charged with cyberstalking. He also faces charges of blackmailing. Court records indicate that he was arrested by the Federal Bureau of Investigation after using the Internet and text messages to blackmail women. It is claimed that he would tell the women he had naked pictures of them and if they did not send him more he would send them to their friends and family. FBI agents believe there were 15 females that were allegedly victimized.

According to the FBI, the man used a Google Voice number in order to contact some of the women. They then tracked the IP address used to create the number and claim it led them to the home address of the man they later charged. Agents also allege that the Google Voice number was set up to forward to the man’s cell phone number.

The federal crimes the man is charged with can have long-term consequences. If convicted under the Internet extortion statute, he could face up to two years in prison. Also, the separate cyberstalking charge could result in a sentence of up to five years in prison.

With such harsh penalties out there, it is important for anyone who uses the Internet to be careful. One wrong move could lead to jail time. If a person is charged with a computer-related federal crime, it essential for them to know their rights and defenses.

Source: The Huffington Post, “Adam Savader, Former Mitt Romney Campaign Intern, Arrested In Alleged Sexual Extortion Scheme,” Chris Gentilviso, April 24, 2013