15 years imprisonment for doitforstate.com
A few months ago, we told the story of Mr. Adams who wished to obtain the domain name doitforstate.com at all costs, and hired Mr. Hopkins whose mission was to compel the domain name holder to transfer the domain to Mr. Adams, under the threat of a firearm. A scenario worthy of a bad thriller (iptwins.com, April 29, 2019). Mr. Adams was sentenced to 14 years’ imprisonment.
Although exceptional, this drama offers an additional argument to defenders of Whois extracts guaranteeing respect for the right to privacy.
Domain name have an objective value (determined by the market), but also a subjective value: one domain name can be worth more in the eyes of X than in the eyes of Y. This is precisely the case here, which therefore differs from other cases of theft or attempted theft in which domain names were generally of objective value due to their generic nature (eg p2p.com, sex.com , 864.com). The facts also stand out through acts of physical violence. Usually, domain name theft attempts take the form of computer attacks. It is advisable, in any event, to make sure that your domain names are properly secure (on this issue, see iptwins.com, March 4, 2019).
Source: DOJ (justice.gov)