No decision after hearing for UK man accused of hacking FBI, NASA
July 1, 2016
Shah Sheikh (1294 articles)

No decision after hearing for UK man accused of hacking FBI, NASA

After two days of evidence, Lauri Love still does not know whether he will be extradited to the United States.

In hearings at Westminster Magistrates’ Court, the Judge heard from 15 witnesses for the defence, but none from the prosecution. Lauri Love, 31, of Stradishall, has been accused by the US authoritiesof hacking into the US Federal Reserve, NASA, the FBI, and the Missile Defence Agency.

He was first arrested by the UK’s National Crime Agency (NCA) in October 2013 and was released on bail in July 2014. US prosecutors claim that Love’s alleged offences were not politically motivated and were instead designed to “to disrupt the operations and infrastructure of the US government” by stealing classified data and personally identifying information of government and military personnel.

However in his defence, Love gave testimony regarding his political views and said his “lifetime ambition is to leave this world in a better state.” Love is accused of using a much-publicised ColdFusion security flaw to gain administrator-level access to servers. He is then alleged to have planted code to give him persistent backdoor access to the networks.

On Tuesday, the court heard from Love’s parents about their son’s mental health, although he himself said he “would rather the case was predicated on due process and doing the right thing, rather than my mental health difficulties.” Love has been diagnosed with Asperger syndrome and depression. On Wednesday, professor Simon Baron-Cohen, professor of Developmental Psychopathology at the University of Cambridge, who diagnosed Love also testified.

Baron-Cohen warned that Love would be ill equipped to cope with the US prison system. Supporters of Love say his situation is similar to that of Gary McKinnon, whose extradition to the US on hacking charges was blocked by home secretary Theresa May in 2012, due to fragile mental health.

Other witnesses on Wednesday included Jennifer Arcuri, CEO of My Hacker House, where Love now works; his US attorney, Tor Ekeland; Naomi Colvin from The Courage Foundation, which supports whistleblowers around the world; and Grace North, of Jeremy Hammond’s support network—a political hacktivist who was jailed in the US in 2013.

The Crown Prosecution Service told Ars that “as proceedings are still active we won’t be commenting at this point.”

District judge Nina Tempia at the Westminster Magistrates’ Court adjourned the case until a later date, when both sides will make their final arguments.

Last month, a judge refused a request by NCA to force Love to hand over his encryption keys as part of a civil claim. Rather that applying the 2000 Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA), the NCA sought access to the keys as part of a case Love brought against it for return of property that the NCA had seized in its original investigation.

Source | ARSTechnica