I think the coders should get a break, management should never put them in a position to act unlawfully. It was forced on them by management and they had to do it or loose their jobs. If you were put into that position you too would choose to implement the code rather then loose your job. The blame should lie squarely on management, we need to make an example out of them with jail time so that other executives learn to act ethically. Without punishment people will always see a benefit to cheating. Management is the one who pulled the trigger on this, the rest are just ancillary accessories.