LulzSec leader named as Matthew Flannery faces 12 years in jail after arrest in Australia
Local media name man as Matthew Flannery, who allegedly uses online name 'Aush0k'
The self-proclaimed leader of the “hacktivist” group LulzSec has been arrested and charged with hacking into government websites, Australian police have said.
The arrest comes as four LulzSec members in Britain face jail after admitting to a series of online attacks.
The identity of the 24-year-old has not yet been officially released but reports in the Australian press named him as Matthew Flannery, who allegedly used the online name “Aush0k”. He was arrested in the coastal town of Point Clare, around 50 miles north of Sydney and faces up to twelve years in prison after being charged with two counts of hacking into computers.
His arrest is another blow to the high-profile Anonymous splinter group, which was responsible for attacks on the CIA, the UK’s Serious Organised Crime Agency and News International.
LulzSec was compromised when its former de facto leader Hector Xavier Monsegur, who went by the moniker “Sabu” online, turned informant after his own arrest and spent around nine months working for the US authorities.
But other members of the hacktivist community mocked the description of the man as a “leader” of the group last night, with some claiming never to have encountered the username on the online chatrooms they use.
Australian Federal Police said they began their investigation into the man, who works in IT, earlier this month when their Cyber Crime Operations team found a “compromise to a government website”. Officers said he held a position of trust with the IT company he worked for and used it to access to sensitive information from clients including government agencies.
In a statement, police said. “The AFP [Australian Federal Police] believes the man’s knowledge and skills presented a significant risk to the clients of the company for which he was employed had he continued his illegal online activities.”
Cyber Crime Operations Commander Glen McEwen said the impairment or disruption of communications to or from computer networks can have serious consequences. He said: “Those thinking of engaging in such activities should be warned that hacking, creating or propagating malicious viruses or participating in Distributed Denial of Service attacks are not harmless fun,” Commander McEwen said.
“Criminal acts such as this can result in serious long-term consequences for individuals, such as criminal convictions or imprisonment.” Police said the man was bailed to reappear in court on May 15.
Just five days ago, another member of the hacking group was jailed for hacking Sony Pictures Entertainment by a Los Angeles court. Cody Kretsinger, 25, was known online as “Recursion”. He was given a one-year term after pleading guilty last April. He will also be required to carry out 1,000 hours of community service after his release for his part in the hack, which Sony said caused more than $600,000 (£392,000) in damage.
Life & Style blogs
Dating site hack reveals sexual secrets of 4 million users
Anorexic actress Rachael Farrokh told by hospitals she is too skinny to treat
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?
New Zealand 'the best country to work as a prostitute', says sex worker advocacy group
What do the emoji on Snapchat mean?
Scotland may have to leave the EU even if it votes to stay in, David Cameron confirms
As a white man, I'm surprised more women aren't tweeting the hashtag #KillAllWhiteMen
Report finds that Britain's wages are the most unequal in Europe
Almost a third of school pupils believe 'Muslims are taking over our country', study claims
Labour leadership: Battle lines are drawn as members battle over party's ideology at first hustings of the contest
The day that Britain resigned as a global power
- 1 JK Rowling horrified by Harry Potter actor Matthew Lewis's raunchy photoshoot
- 2 As a white man, I'm surprised more women aren't tweeting the hashtag #KillAllWhiteMen
- 3 The ten most unequal developed countries in the world
- 4 Saudi Arabia 'seeking to head United Nations Human Rights Council'
- 5 New Zealand 'the best country to work as a prostitute', says sex worker advocacy group
iJobs Gadgets & Tech
£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software / C# Developer w...
£35 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Software Developer (JavaS...
£25000 - £30000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Graduate UI Application Developer - ...