Lauri Love case: Hacking suspect wins extradition appeal

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Lauri Love case: Hacking suspect wins extradition appeal

Alleged computer hacker Lauri Love has won his High Court appeal against his extradition to the US.

Mr Love, 32, from Stradishall, Suffolk, who was first arrested in October 2013, is suspected of hacking into FBI, US Central Bank and Nasa systems.

Lord Chief Justice Lord Burnett and Mr Justice Ouseley said they permitted Mr Love’s appeal against his extradition.

However, they said it would “not be oppressive” to “prosecute Mr Love in England for the offences”.

Mr Love, speaking outside the court, said he was “very thankful for all the support” he had received.

He said he hoped he had set a “precedent so this will not happen to people in the future”.

Authorities in the US have been fighting for Mr Love to face trial on charges of cyber-hacking, which lawyers have said could mean a sentence of up to 99 years in prison if he is found guilty.

Mr Love is alleged to have stolen huge amounts of data from US agencies, including the Federal Reserve, the US army, the defence department, Nasa and the FBI in a spate of online attacks in 2012 and 2013.

However, his supporters had warned if he was extradited there was a “high risk” Mr Love, who has Asperger syndrome, would kill himself.

He has also been diagnosed with a depressive illness.

‘Potentially catastrophic consequences’

The decision to block extradition was met with cheers in the packed London courtroom.

Emma Norton, head of legal casework for Liberty, welcomed the decision.

“We are delighted that the court has today recognised Lauri’s vulnerability, close family connections to the UK and the potentially catastrophic consequences of extraditing him,” she said.

“This was always a case that could have been prosecuted here and it’s shameful that Lauri and his family have been put through this terrible ordeal.”

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