Student pleads not guilty to Sarah Palin email exposure

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Student pleads not guilty to Sarah Palin email exposure

A 21 year old student faces twenty years in prison for accessing Sarah Palin’s email account and publishing what he found.

David Kernell, son of Democratic Tennessee state Representative Mike Kernell, is facing four charges of intentionally accessing the account without authorisation, fraud, unlawful electronic transmission of material outside Tennessee and attempts to conceal records to impede an FBI investigation.

If convicted he faces 20 years in prison, a fine of up to US$250,000 and five years supervised release.

Kernell is charged with using publically available data to guess the password on the then vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin’s Yahoo email account. He then passed the emails on to online information site Wikileaks.

The case that Palin was using her internet email account for official government business as governor of Alaska, and she was to hand over the account details. All official business is supposed to be carried out on government accounts for oversight purposes.

Kernell was originally just on a single charge of accessing the account without authorization but prosecutors added the other three charges recently.

Kernell’s trial is due to begin in October and he has been released on bail under condition that he does not use his computer for anything other than school work.

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