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US indicts Romanian hacker 'Guccifer'

Marcel Lazar Lehel accused of posting data stolen from email and social media accounts of US celebrities and lawmakers.

Last updated: 13 Jun 2014 09:07
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Lehel is already in a Romanian jail after being sentenced there last week for hacking crimes [Reuters]

A Romanian hacker has been indicted in Virginia on charges that he posted data stolen from email and social media accounts of US celebrities and politicians.

Marcel Lazar Lehel, known as "Guccier", is already in a Romanian jail after being sentenced there last week to serve up to seven years in prison for hacking crimes against Romanian citizens.

The US Department of Justice said on Thursday that a grand jury had indicted Lehel on charges of wire fraud, unauthorised access to a protected computer, aggravated identity theft, cyberstalking and obstruction of justice.

No mention of his alleged attacks on US citizens were made in the Romanian court last week, and an official at the Romanian general prosecutor's office, who has knowledge of the case but who did not want to be named, told the Reuters news agency last week that the office had no knowledge of any US requests for Lehel's extradition.

Peter Carr, US Department of Justice spokesman, declined to comment when asked whether Washington would seek to extradite Lehel, a former taxi driver, to the US for trial.

Guccifer shot to fame in 2013 after he claimed responsibility for hacking into George W Bush family emails and posted artwork by the former president, as well as self-portraits of him in the bath.

The same year, the hacker distributed emotional emails sent to former US Secretary of State Colin Powell from European Parliament member Corina Cretu, a Romanian, prompting Powell to deny that they had an affair.

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