[ISN] Home Secretary rejects McKinnon anti-extradition plea

From: InfoSec News <alerts_at_private>
Date: Wed, 15 Oct 2008 00:23:04 -0500 (CDT)

By John Leyden
The Register
13th October 2008

The Home Secretary has rejected a request to rip up an extradition order 
against accused Pentagon hacker Gary McKinnon.

McKinnon was diagnosed with Asperger's syndrome and solicitors for the 
Briton wrote to Jacqui Smith saying his medical condition ought to mean 
he should face criminal prosecution over his admitted hacking activities 
in the UK rather than the US. The 42 year-old London-based Scot faces 
seven charges of hacking into 97 US government, NASA and military 
systems during 2001 and 2002. He has described the acts as an attempt to 
unearth proof that the US military was suppressing evidence that it had 
acquired advanced technology from UFOs.

US prosecutors have been seeking his extradition for mounting the 
"biggest military hack of all time" since 2005 while the former sysadmin 
has run a high-profile campaign to avoid extradition. McKinnon's appeals 
against extradition were taken all the way through the British legal 
system to the House of Lords, where arguments were rejected that US 
authorities overstepped the mark in plea bargaining negotiations. The 
European Court of Human Rights declined to get involved, leaving a plea 
to the Home Secretary on medical grounds as McKinnon's main hope of 
avoiding a one-way trans-Atlantic trip with the US Marshalls' Service.

A brace of protests by McKinnon's supporters outside the Home Office and 
one outside the US Embassy have failed to achieve the required effect 
after Jacqui Smith declined to intervene, in a decision relayed to 
McKinnon's lawyers on Monday. Worse still, she failed to do anything to 
ensure McKinnon's early repatriation to the UK to serve the remainder of 
any sentence the US court might eventually impose.


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Received on Tue Oct 14 2008 - 22:23:04 PDT

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