Saturday, 21 July, 2018

United Kingdom high court blocks suspected hacker's U.S. extradition

LNPThe ruling in Love's favour was greeted by a loud cheer from the packed public LNPThe ruling in Love's favour was greeted by a loud cheer from the packed public
Melinda Barton | 06 February, 2018, 16:08

An autistic British man accused of hacking into USA government agencies won his appeal against extradition to the United States on Monday but was told he should be prosecuted in Britain instead.

A man accused of launching cyber attacks on targets including the FBI, US Army, Nasa and Department of Defence has won his battle against being extradited to the US.

They added: "We accept that the evidence shows that the fact of extradition would bring on severe depression and that Mr Love would probably be determined to commit suicide, here or in America".

Peter Caldwell QC of Drystone Chambers, the UK Crown Prosecution Service barrister appearing for the USA government, argued in court in November that the forum bar should not have been applied to Love because the harm he was said to have caused was in America, and therefore he should answer for that to the United States justice system.

Following the court's decision, Love said: "This is not just for myself".

"There is an ongoing problem with people with autism in the justice system - they have actually been debating it in Westminster Hall".

His father Alexander Love said: "This is a victory for justice". "My view is Britain is a great country, and we call it Great Britain because it is a great place to live".

The 33-year-old defendant, from Suffolk, was arrested in the United Kingdom in 2013 for offences related to the Computer Misuse Act, and faced up to 99 years in a USA prison and a $9m (£6.4m) fine if found guilty, Wired reports.

Love suffers from Asperger syndrome and his legal team argued that if exposed to the USA prison system, he would likely commit suicide.

He also suffers from a depressive illness.

"We're hopeful that other people may be able to rely on this verdict to ensure they are treated more humanely by the justice system".

He said he was "very thankful for all the support" he had received.

After the ruling, Mr Love, speaking outside court, said: "This decision is important for the appropriate administration of criminal justice and also for the humanitarian accommodation of people whose brains work differently".

"With any luck, today's ruling will mean that prosecuting authorities finally start respecting the clear will of the British public: we do not extradite our geeks to face medieval punishment in the United States", Colvin said in a statement. The multi-pronged attack, which affected the Federal Reserve, Nasa and the USA army, was a reaction to the death of Aaron Swartz on January 11th, 2013. Twelve months later, the UK's Crown Prosecution Service quietly announced that he had been released from bail. Like Love he was suspected of multiple hacking offences and was seen as a high suicide risk due to suffering from Aspergers and depression.

Mr Love was an activist in the Occupy movement while at university.

The High Court in London ruled against allowing Lauri Love to be extradited, although judges said it would still be possible to prosecute him in England.

24 October 2016: MPs sign a letter asking President Obama to.