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Pentagon hacker says charges have been manufactured

Pentagon hacker says charges have been manufactured
Pentagon hacker says charges have been manufactured 

25th August 2006

The hacker at the centre of an extradition storm after he broke into the 
US Military and NASA computer systems has said the charges against him 
in the US have been manufactured to ease his extradition there.

"For it to be extraditable under their computer laws in America you have 
to have caused $5,000 worth of damage and lo and behold they say that 
every computer I was on I caused exactly $5,000 worth of damage so it is 
patently a falsely structured argument," Gary McKinnon told OUT-LAW.

McKinnon makes the claims in OUT-LAW Radio, a new weekly podcast from 
OUT-LAW launched today.

Home Secretary John Reid signed McKinnon's order for extradition to the 
US in July, a decision McKinnon is now appealing. McKinnon's lawyers 
have warned that not only could he face a secret military trial with no 
right of appeal, but that he could even be sent to detention camp 
Guantanemo Bay.

"At first I laughed when this was first raised, I said 'come on, don't 
be ridiculous', but as someone pointed out most of the people if not all 
the people have never even proven to have been terrorists and they've 
been languishing there for years," McKinnon tells OUT-LAW Radio. 
"Whereas allegedly I've directly attacked military networks, so that put 
it in perspective for me."

McKinnon admits accessing the secret computers in 2001 and 2002, saying 
that he was looking for and found evidence of alien life and 
reverse-engineered alien technology. But whereas UK prosecutors said 
that he would serve community service, US prosecutors are publicly 
threatening him with sentences of up to 70 years in jail.

McKinnon argues that he should be tried, but that it should be in the 
UK, where the offence was committed. He says that he was working with 
very basic hacking tools from a simple internet connection, and that the 
only reason he was able to access systems was because security was so 

"When you look at the fact that my method for gaining entry was scanning 
for blank passwords, technically you could say that there was no 
security to begin with," he said.

Hear the interview: OUT-LAW Radio - 

Copyright 2006,

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