Barrett Brown, a writer and “hacktivist” who at one point acted as a public “spokesperson” for fellow hackers and activists who self-identified as members of the “Anonymous” online movement, was arrested late Wednesday by the Dallas County Sheriff’s office and turned over to the FBI, Reuters reported Thursday.
A Dallas County Sheriff spokesperson told Reuters that she did not know why Brown had been arrested nor what he was being charged with, as there as no offense listed on his booking sheet. However, Brown’s attorney told Wired that Brown was “scheduled to be arraigned today in Texas on making threats to a federal agent.”
However, hours before his arrest, Brown posted a three-part first-person video diary on YouTube entitled “Why I’m Going to Destroy FBI Agent Robert Smith.”
Brown, had “stepped down” from his role as the Anonymous media spokesperson in May 2011 to start his own offshoot Project PM, dedicated to exposing what he said was a mushrooming surveillance state and corrupt military industrial complex, through which he still collaborated with Anonymous hackers. In September 2011, Brown was reported to be working on a book about his involvement in Anonymous. Later that year, he said he was taking charge of an operation to release information that would implicate allies of the Zetas drug cartel in Mexico, a plan that did not materialize and which many have speculated was a hoax.