April 24, 2024

Arion Kurtaj, the 18-year-old kid who leaked the GTA-6 clips and masterminded the notorious LapsusS hacking group, has been handed a hospital order for an indefinite period rather than a conventional sentence in prison for his audacious hacking spree.

The hearing of the sentence at Guildford Crown Court resulted in the hospital order, which implied that Kurtaj would remain in a secure facility until doctors didn’t consider him to be a potential threat.

The kid from Oxford was a part of LapsusS, the gang targeting tech giants like Nvidia and Uber as well.

The leaking of Grand Theft Auto 6 clips had already made headlines in recent months. He was accused of stealing as many as 90 clips from the unreleased GTA 6 game and releasing some of them on the web.

This decision comes after Kurtaj faced a two-month trial at Southwark Crown Court in London. Along with a 17-year-old accomplice, he was considered as the “key player” for his cyber intrusion.

According to psychiatrists, Kurtaj was unfit for trial as he was experiencing acute autism. Therefore, the jury had to decide whether or not he was at fault as per the allegations. The jury found Kurtaj guilty of 12 offenses during his spree of cyber intrusions.

It ranged from blackmailing to fraud and unauthorized cyber acts to non-compliance with requests from the Police. After 9 hours and 19 minutes of deliberation, the jury unanimously found Kurtaj guilty of the crimes.

Arion Kurtaj Threatened Rockstar Games To Leak Stolen Source Code

In the ongoing case, Kurtaj had threatened Rockstar Games to leak the stolen source code for the GTA sequel. He added, “If Rockstar does not contact me on Telegram within 24 hours I will start releasing the source code”.

Rockstar Games released its official GTA 6 trailer earlier this month following the leaked visuals, which recorded as many as 128 million views on YouTube in just 4 days.

The allegations resulting in the hospitalization order include six cases of unauthorized computer interference, two cases of fraud, three blackmail cases, and a Police non-compliance while they requested access to his mobile device.

In another cybercrime, the duo targeted Nvidia back in February 2022. They issued an ultimatum to the company, stating that they would “release Nvidia Corporation’s intellectual property on to the web” in case the company didn’t fulfill their financial demands.

What Kurtaj’s Defense Counsel Had To Say?

The defense counsel of Kurtaj, David Miller, stated that his client was “the most vulnerable of adolescents”, who found himself cornered against formidable adversaries, which included multi-billion-dollar corporations along with intelligence agencies like the FBI, Interpol, National Crime Agency, and the City of London Police.

This sentence is undoubtedly unique, and it raises questions about the role of mental health in cybercrime. It also reveals that the most sophisticated hackers may remain vulnerable to mental adversaries, as evident in the ongoing case.

Besides, the decision marks a departure from the conventional nature of punitive measures courts usually take against offenders. This is a rehabilitative approach for youth involved in cyber warfare while suffering from complex mental ailments.

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