Lauri Love was accused of hacking into United States government websites, will not be extradited to stand trial in the U.S., the High Court of England and Wales ruled today.
The list of victims of the hacker includes the FBI, the Federal Reserve Bank, US Missile Defence Agency, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), and the US Missile Defence Agency.
The decision of the Lauri Love’s extradition was taken at Westminster Magistrates’ Court in London in 2016, by District Judge Nina Tempia. If extradited, Love risks a sentence to up to 99 years in prison and a potential fine of up to $9 million.
Actually, the man would face a prison sentence in the UK following his five years of legal battle.
US Prosecutors believe that Lauri Love is a member of a hacker crew, they sustain that he was also involved in the OpLastResort campaign launched by Anonymous against the US Government.
Lord Chief Justice Lord Burnett of Maldon and Justice Ouseley halted the extradition after heard Lauri Love suffered severe mental illness, including Asperger syndrome, and depression, they fear the man should commit suicide if extradited.
“There have not been any incidents of self-harm in the past but I accept Mr Love has experienced suicidal thoughts intermittently, both in the past and now. Mr Love denied any suggestion that he had exaggerated his symptoms and his suicide risk which I accept given the medical evidence.” the High Court ruled on Monday.
“I also accept Professor Baron-Cohen and Professor Kopelman’s evidence that he would attempt suicide before extradition to the United States. Both are of the opinion he would be at high risk of suicide. I accept Professor BaronCohen’s oral evidence that Mr Love’s intention is not a reflection of a voluntary plan or act but due to his mental health being dependant on him being at home with his parents and not being detained for an indefinite period.”
The court recognized that extradition would be “oppressive” due to the man’s health conditions. Love supporters that were present in the court applauded the judgment.
The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), which acts on behalf of the US authorities, would examine the judgment before deciding whether to appeal the high court decision to the supreme court.
“I’m thankful for all the support we’ve had, without which I’m not sure I would have made it this far.” commented Love expressing gratitude to the judges.
The judgment was accepted with joy in the hacking community and by human rights advocates.
VICTORY: @LauriLove wins UK appeal against US extradition. Congratulations to Lauri, his lawyers & family, @CourageFound and many supporters on an excellent campaign.
— Julian Assange ⌛ (@JulianAssange) February 5, 2018
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(Security Affairs – Lauri Love, hacking)