Colton Harris-Moore, the "Barefoot Bandit," pleads guilty to 7 federal charges

Colton Harris-Moore, the 20-year-old, 6-foot-5 criminal whose hijinks in multiple countries led to internet fame and the "Barefoot Bandit" name, today pleaded guilty to seven criminal charges.

Appearing in U.S. District Court in Seattle, the lanky, 6-foot-5 Camano Island man entered guilty pleas to each of the federal charges. Under a plea agreement with federal prosecutors, Harris-Moore, 20, also agreed to forfeit any proceeds earned from the sale of his story.

The forfeiture issue had been a sticking point in plea negotiations between federal prosecutors and the defense, according to Harris-Moore's attorney, John Henry Brown. Browne has said that Harris-Moore did not want to profit from his crime spree and intends any proceeds to go toward paying restitution, which Browne said is in the range of $1.5 million.

"Whether the government wants it or not, there will be a movie. There will be more books. And there will be money from them," Browne said earlier this month.

Heh. And what poetry it would be if everyone who wanted to see the movie just stole it online!

More, including court documents, at the Seattle Times.

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  1. If he could have held out a couple more years, we could have hidden him in our new mountaintop lair.

    1. Yeah, but one day he’d probably ransack the place and make his getaway on Xeni’s unicorn.

    1. FREE Colton!

      This gives me an idea for a new reality television show where the most popular criminal gets a get out of jail free card. We’ll call it, American Rapscallion. The soundtrack will feature Nero on fiddle.

      1. Great idea! The crowd could chant “Barabbas! Barabbas!” as the countdown clock ticked before it showed us who had won.

  2. I understand the desire for lawmakers to make sure this guy does not make a profit from his crimes, however this does mean than a ton of other people will, while glorifying the actions in any case.

    And where does that leave Harris-Moore? No possible source of income, no future (who will hire him?), and no way out of a shitty mess except to live in prison the rest of his life (if not these crimes, then what he’ll have to do in future to stay alive).

    A better option would be to set a limit on how much he can be paid to a reasonable income, to be kept in trust until he leaves prison.

    1. But if you allow that, you must also endorse paying poor people who are willing to work, and we all know that’s not The American Wayâ„¢

  3. It’s kind of frightening to me that one can sign away, or be bullied into giving away, the story of your life. As Kickstart said – sure, punish the guy, he’s going to be paying and doing jailtime. But why not let him benefit off a story that’s his and his alone? I mean, he can be a fucked up kid and pay for his crimes. At least let him enjoy profiting off of his own personality.

    1. He’s not signing away the story of his life; he just can’t profit from his two year crime spree by making a movie about that period, a book, and so on.

    2. He is and still can sell his story rights… he just can’t use the money for anything other than paying off his victims. One point of law is to put your finger on the scale and make crimes not worth committing. Being denied the ability to profit from your fame and having to work as a cashier at the local super market just sounds like justice to me.

      Part of his punishment being that he is stripped of his ability to make money off of his fame sounds like a perfectly reasonable, if slightly non-traditional form of punishment.

  4. i will get indignant about his crimes right after
    Bush gets sent to the Hague on war crimes charges.

    1. i will get indignant about his crimes right after Bush gets sent to the Hague on war crimes charges.

      I can picture the scene at your house:

      Child: “I don’t feel good!”

      Anon: “I will sympathize with your tummyache right after cancer is cured.”

  5. Directing that the proceeds of a criminal’s book/movie/whatever based on their crimes go to their victims is hardly new. A number of places in the US have so-called “Son of Sam” laws. And we’re better for it.

    On a side note, I wonder how many would be cheering on Colton and apologizing for his handgun-armed crime spree if he were, say, a 20 year-old black man instead of tall, white, and handsome? Actually, don’t answer. I think I know already.

    1. @ Anon #16

      On a side note, I wonder how many would be cheering on Colton and apologizing for his handgun-armed crime spree if he were, say, a 20 year-old black man instead of tall, white, and handsome? Actually, don’t answer. I think I know already.

      You believe you know what any replier would answer? Wow, you’re either psychic or a complete and total bigot.

    2. I wonder how many would be cheering on Colton and apologizing for his handgun-armed crime spree if he were, say, a 20 year-old black man instead of tall, white, and handsome?

      You have a rather liberal definitions of handsome, I guess..

    3. I know already, too. I’ve made that point before about this guy- glad I’m not the only one who thinks it.

  6. “Heh. And what poetry it would be if everyone who wanted to see the movie just stole it online!”


    *hums along*

  7. “Heh. And what poetry it would be if everyone who wanted to see the movie just stole it online!”

    Xeni, you’re not suggesting that free online sharing of content actually hurts the copyright holder, are you? Paging Cory Doctorow.

  8. ‘You have a rather liberal definitions of handsome, I guess..’

    Huh, do they? I guess I do, too- because- no doubt about it- this boy is handsome.

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