Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


Forgot your password?
Crime United Kingdom United States News Your Rights Online

MacKinnon Extradition Blocked By UK Home Secretary 258

RockDoctor writes "BBC radio news (2012-10-16 GMT 13:00) is reporting that the Home Secretary has blocked the extradition of Gary MacKinnon to the U.S. for (alleged) computer hacking crimes. Paraphrasing: the Director of Public Prosecutions is going to have to decide if there is sufficient evidence for him to be tried in the UK for crimes committed in (or from) the UK. " (Also at The Independent.)
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

MacKinnon Extradition Blocked By UK Home Secretary

Comments Filter:
  • Re:A pity (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 16, 2012 @08:50AM (#41667745)

    He has an independently verified medical condition which makes him a high-risk for suicide. That doesn't make him innocent of his crimes; if you'd bother to read the article you'd see his case is now under consideration for prosecution in the UK.

    This has stopped his extradition, not him being liable for his actions.

  • Re:A pity (Score:5, Informative)

    by jonbryce ( 703250 ) on Tuesday October 16, 2012 @09:08AM (#41667903) Homepage

    Unauthorised access to computer material contrary to S1 of the Computer Misuse Act 1990. The maximum penalty for that in the UK is 2 years in prison, although as this is not a very serious example of the offence, it is likely he would get a much lower prison term, probably in the order of a couple of months at most.

  • by Xest ( 935314 ) on Tuesday October 16, 2012 @09:22AM (#41668073)

    "Also, the costs probably are not only about upgrading the security system"

    He got in because they used a blank password for some accounts.

    I'd argue that no cost was caused the US in terms of fixing the security holes, because it's something their staff should be doing routinely as part of their job in the first place so effectively in this respect all Gary did was expose the fact that the government was paying staff who weren't doing what they were paid to do.

    I agree there will have been some cost to doing an audit of what he accessed etc. but nothing close to the inflated figure the US provided, or if it was that high, then they should again thank him for making them aware of the fact they're paying their IT staff and/or contractors a good few orders of magnitude too much.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 16, 2012 @09:51AM (#41668387)

    In public rhetoric they claims McKinnon is a cyber-terrorist, who committed the biggest military hack of all time and did a million worth of damage, and left the US at risk.

    In terms of evidence they offered, they offered nothing. Zip.

    Nobody should be extradited without evidence. He's not a cyber-terrorist, the USA isn't facing cyber-pearl-harbor, they talked up his case a lot but they offered no evidence of any of it. Under that circumstance he should be extradited.

    However, the UK-US extradition law doesn't require evidence of a crime, the US can say "We want Bob Smith, he's 6'2", blue eyes, last lived at 32b The High Street, Slough", "we want him for murder", "murder is a crime in the US serious enough to use the expedited extradition". But they don't have to offer any evidence that "Bob Smith" murdered anyone. It's not part of the extradition on the UK to US leg, the other way around, US to UK, the Americans insist on evidence showing that Bob Smith actually did murder someone.

    Because the evidence isn't part of the extradition, Bob can't challenge it. Being innocent is no defense against extradition under this treaty. Innocent or guilty the treaty makes no distinction. Which is why no-one should be extradited under this.

    The Parliament investigation explains in details the problems with it:

      189. Mr David Bermingham, argued that:

    "if you are a United States citizen who is wanted for extradition by the United Kingdom, you have an absolute right to a hearing in a United States court where you can challenge the evidence that has been put in front of the court and present evidence of your own. If, by contrast, you are a United Kingdom citizen or somebody ordinarily resident here who is wanted by the United States, you have no such right."[195]

    190. In Mr Bermingham's opinion, the UK extradited people to the US "without so much as a scrap of evidence being put in front of a UK court" which was "a grave disservice to our citizens and other people who may be the subject of extradition."[196]

    195. Article 5(3) creates a two-fold problem because it allows the extradition of individuals on the basis of evidence which the CPS has deemed insufficient to prosecute in this country and the extradition of individuals where the CPS has decided there is no public interest in prosecuting.

  • Re:A pity (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 16, 2012 @10:29AM (#41668733)
    I think that's how everyone sees it. Except for the Americans who want to impose their law everywhere.
  • Re:A pity (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 16, 2012 @12:07PM (#41669919)

    Sorry, the constitution does NOT apply to foreigners in the US.

    I am an immigrant (legal) and the documents specifically state that I am not allowed to present myself as a US Citizen since many constitution protections do not apply to me:

    Second Amendment – Right to keep and bear arms
    Fourth Amendment – Protection from unreasonable search and seizure - DHS and other police forces are allowed to seize and search me at any time
    Sixth Amendment – Trial by jury and rights of the accused; Confrontation Clause, speedy trial, public trial, right to counsel - DHS trials are closed to the public, no jury, can last well beyond the time your alien status expires (at which point you have to leave and the case is closed) and decisions made by a DHS judge on my status as an alien resident cannot be challenged by state or federal judges.

    Besides that I do not have the right to vote or seek political office on a federal level.

    The same fate is slowly coming for US citizens as well and it has already started in airports and anywhere within 100 miles of an international border or airport.

In the realm of scientific observation, luck is granted only to those who are prepared. - Louis Pasteur