Freedom for most wanted hacker

Matthew Thomas

Matthew Thomas

Kevin Mitnick, the world's most infamous computer hacker, has been released from prison in the US after almost five years' incarceration.

Mitnick, 36, will serve a further three years' probation, during which he will be required to obtain special permission to use a computer.

He is bitter about his conviction and claims he has been unfairly treated by the media. "My actions and my life have been manipulated and grossly misrepresented by the media since I was 17," he said in a statement on the Free Kevin Web site.

"My case is a case of curiosity - I wanted to know as much as I could find out about how phone networks work and the ins and outs of computer security. There is no evidence in this case whatsoever, and certainly no intent on my part at any time, to defraud anyone of anything."

Mitnick, whose supporters ran a campaign for his freedom on the Internet, has a long history of arrests on charges of breaking into corporate systems. And for three years, he went underground as a fugitive, triggering a nationwide search.

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