A Justice official speaking on background told B&C/Multichannel News that DOJ did not tell congressional investigators
that its prosecution of the late Internet activist Aaron Swartz was motivated
Huffington Post story reported DOJ had "weighed" Swartz open
access manifesto in deciding to prosecute. But while that story reported
that Justice had told investigators that the manifesto demonstrated his malicious
intent, that was not how it was interpreted by Swartz's partner as reported by
the activist group Swartz helped found, Demand Progress.
An email about the blog posting of Taren
Stinebrickner-Kauffman, Swartz's partner, said that she was reacting to the
news that "the Department of Justice has told Congressional investigators
that Aaron's prosecution was motivated by political views on copyright."
That was not accurate, the DOJ official said when asked
about that characterization.
Swartz died of an apparent suicide and some friends and
followers blame the DOJ prosecution in part for his death.
Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), chairman of the House Committee on
Oversight and Government Reform, and ranking member Elijah Cummings (D-Md.)
asked Justice for the
briefing on the reasons for bringing criminal charges against Swartz.