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US indicts suspected UK LulzSec member

Warwick Ashford

The US has indicted UK suspected LulzSec member Ryan Cleary in connection with the hacking of the Fox and PBS television networks and Sony's film and TV studio.

The move comes two months after LulzSec member Cody Kretsinger pleaded guilty in a US district court in Los Angeles to taking part in a breach of computer systems at Sony Pictures Entertainment.

Cleary, who was arrested in June 2011 for offences under the UK Computer Misuse Act 1990, is accused of working with other members of the hacktivist group LulzSec to steal data, deface websites and attack servers in the US.

The charges relate specifically to Cleary's alleged involvement in a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack on the UK Serious Organised Crime Agency (Soca) on 20 June 2011, an attack on the website of the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry in November 2010, and an attack on the British Phonographic Industry's website in October.

The US indictment means the 20-year-old Briton could face extradition to the US to stand trial, and up to 25 years in prison if found guilty.

According to the indictment, Cleary and his unnamed co-conspirators stole confidential user information from News Corp's Fox Entertainment Group and Sony Pictures Entertainment.

The indictment also accuses Cleary and his co-conspirators of defacing the PBS website and launching denial-of-service attacks against an online gaming website.

US authorities said they would decide on whether to seek Cleary's extradition only after the conclusion of his UK trial, which is scheduled to start on 25 June.


Image: iStockphoto/Thinkstock

 


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