Internet activist, creator of RSS Aaron Swartz found dead
Swartz's body was found Friday evening in Brooklyn, said Ellen Borakove, a spokeswoman with the New York medical examiner's office.
An uncle, Michael Wolf, said that Swartz had apparently hanged himself.
His family and partner said they were "in shock, and have not yet come to terms with his passing."
"Aaron's insatiable curiosity, creativity, and brilliance; his reflexive empathy and capacity for selfless, boundless love; his refusal to accept injustice as inevitable -- these gifts made the world, and our lives, far brighter," they said in a statement.
"We're grateful for our time with him, to those who loved him and stood with him, and to all of those who continue his work for a better world."
The hacking charges relate to the downloading of millions of academic papers from online archive JSTOR, which prosecutors say he intended to distribute for free.
Swartz, a committed advocate for the freedom of information over the Internet, had denied charges of computer fraud at an initial hearing last year, but his federal trial was due to begin next month.
Charges in the case, including wire fraud and computer fraud, were pending at the time of Swartz's death, carrying potential penalties of up to 35 years in prison and USD 1 million in fines, the New York Times reported.
A prodigy, Swartz was behind some of the Internet's defining moments. At
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