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18 U.S.C.S. § 3663A(a)(1) requires the district court to award restitution when, according to subsection (c)(1)(B), an identifiable victim or victims has suffered a physical injury or pecuniary loss. In ordering restitution under § 3663A, the district court must require the defendant to reimburse the victim for lost income and necessary expenses incurred during participation in the investigation or prosecution of the offense. 18 U.S.C.S. § 3663A(b)(4); 18 U.S.C.S. 3664(f)(1)(A). The statute further provides that any dispute as to the proper amount or type of restitution shall be resolved by the court by the preponderance of the evidence. 18 U.S.C.S. § 3664(e).
Luay Batti was convicted of improperly accessing information from a protected computer, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1030(a)(2)(C) and (c)(2)(B)(iii). He appealed the district court's finding that the value of the information that he obtained exceeded $5,000 and the district court's order of $47,565 in restitution.
Was the district court’s finding that the value of the information that Batti obtained exceeded $5,000 and the district court's order of $47,565 in restitution proper?
The court affirmed and found that the value of the information obtained bore no relation to whether the value was diminished by Batti’s actions. The district court properly defined the measure of the value of the information obtained according to the definition established for stolen property cases under 18 U.S.C.S. §§ 2311 and 2314. Therefore, the use of the cost of production of the video footage that defendant obtained and posted online was a reasonable method by which to determine the value of the information obtained. Finally, restitution under 18 U.S.C.S. § 3663A and 3664 was properly calculated by allowing reimbursement to Batti’s employer for the hiring of a computer-security firm and legal counsel.