Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?
United Kingdom Crime Security The Courts

Lauri Love Ruling 'Sets Precedent' For Trying Hacking Suspects in UK (theguardian.com) 222

A high court ruling blocking extradition to the US of Lauri Love, a student accused of breaking into US government websites, has been welcomed by lawyers and human rights groups as a precedent for trying hacking suspects in the UK in future. From a report: The decision delivered by the lord chief justice, Lord Burnett of Maldon, is highly critical of the conditions Love would have endured in US jails, warning of the risk of suicide. Lawyers for the 33-year-old, who lives in Suffolk, had argued that Love should be tried in Britain for allegedly hacking into US government websites and that he would be at risk of killing himself if sent to the US. There was cheering and applause in court on Monday when Burnett announced his decision. He asked supporters to be quiet, saying: "This is a court, not a theatre." In his judgment, Burnett said: "It would not be oppressive to prosecute Mr Love in England for the offences alleged against him. Far from it. Much of Mr Love's argument was based on the contention that this is indeed where he should be prosecuted
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Lauri Love Ruling 'Sets Precedent' For Trying Hacking Suspects in UK

Comments Filter:
  • Pardon my ignorance on law but if he committed the crime in the UK then why try and extridite him in the first place? I thought extradition was only if you committed a crime in a country and then left by the time they wanted to prosecute you.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by jellomizer ( 103300 )

      The computers that were attacked were on US Soil. So the crime was committed in the US.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        But the criminal act was committed in the UK.

      • by tsstahl ( 812393 ) on Monday February 05, 2018 @01:50PM (#56071545)

        Sooo, if I gamble online and the server is in Elbonia, I'm not breaking any US laws? 'Cuz the U.S. government does not agree.

        Only point being, international jurisdiction is about as grey as gray can be, no matter how you spell it.

        • The US just does as it wants. There's other things that could legal in your home US state, legal in Elbonia, but if you travel there to do them, you can be imprisoned by the US for years, because of federal extraterritorial enforcement.
        • You will be fine gambling in Elbonia, just as long as that ill gotten money doesn't flow to the US.

    • by AHuxley ( 892839 )
      The US has a long history of protecting its self given:
      "To define and punish Piracies and Felonies committed on the high Seas, and Offences against the Law of Nations"
      Other nations should remember that "Shores of Tripoli" and "Halls of Montezuma" part of a hymn.
      The USA will come looking and its well funded legal system is always on the job.
  • by Uberbah ( 647458 ) on Monday February 05, 2018 @01:21PM (#56071331)

    Lawyers for the 33-year-old, who lives in Suffolk, had argued that Love should be tried in Britain for allegedly hacking into US government websites and that he would be at risk of killing himself if sent to the US.

    Before blowing that off as outlandish, Sweden is known for keeping suspects incommunicado for weeks [theguardian.com] without even charging them, and then deporting them to other countries to face other charges. Obama had Chelsea Manning tortured with solitary confident for months - yes it's torture [washingtonpost.com] and it causes permanent damage after a couple weeks - and she eventually attempted suicide.

    • I like how we are constantly redefining the definition of torture. I fully expect that in 2089 your descendants will be arguing that not receiving strawberry cheesecake for desert is torture and causes lasting psychological harm.

      • by Pyramid ( 57001 ) on Monday February 05, 2018 @01:53PM (#56071571)

        What exactly is your definition of "torture"? There is a large body of evidence that shows solitary confinement causes severe psychological damage. Prisons are beginning to abolish it because it does not actually improve anything; rather, it literally drives people crazy.

        • by bluefoxlucid ( 723572 ) on Monday February 05, 2018 @02:33PM (#56071857) Homepage Journal

          Actually, correctional systems in states such as North Dakota have started implementing policies to normalize the prison environment and improve correctional outcomes, among other things. They have a discretionary parole program there, too, to get people out of prison and instead control them via the mechanism of parole; and the governor can commute sentences at the request of the parole advisory board if they think it's a waste of resources to keep tabs on a guy with a 20-year sentence who got out on parole after 3 years and has been determined not a likely reoffender or otherwise threat to the community 6 months later.

          Between expanded in-prison programs, more inmate autonomy, a better relationship between inmates and prison staff, expanded behavioral health services, and incoming and outgoing services to keep people out of prison or to stabilize them when they get out, the amount of trouble inmates cause in prison and the rate at which inmates reoffend has dropped considerably.

          As a result of all of this, North Dakota went from having over a hundred inmates in solitary confinement to having maybe three; and they don't stay in solitary confinement for very long at all. Their caseworkers spend a lot of time with them, and they get cognitive therapy to help them improve so they can go back to general population quickly. It really is phenomenal.

          It is my intent to drive similar change across the whole of the United States.

          • It is my intent to drive similar change across the whole of the United States.

            Good for you. I mean that: no sarcasm.

            Do you have some gfood places I can read up on this? Sounds like a huge improvement

            • Right now I've been calling up some people who know more about this than I. I've spoken to ND's DoC head and learned about some of their programs. They've been pushing a program called Justice Reinvestment [nd.gov] whereby they change how their corrections system operates and reinvest the savings into making it operate even better, in a basic sense. Their legislature has a committee for this [nd.gov].

              They actually have a system where private behavioral health service providers get paid a monthly fee for their cases, and

    • Just tell the Swedes you're a Syrian refugee. They'll naturally drop rape charges.
    • Nice try. Restricting access by the public and press is not the same as solitary confinement.
      • by Uberbah ( 647458 )

        Could always try reading the citation:

        "Gottfrid Svartholm will be kept in detention for at least two more weeks on suspicion of hacking into a Swedish IT company connected to the country's tax authorities. According to Prosecutor Henry Olin the extended detention is needed 'to prevent him from having contact with other people.' The Pirate Bay co-founder is not allowed to have visitors and is even being denied access to newspapers and television. . . .

        • by nasch ( 598556 )

          "Not allowed to have visitors" is very very different from solitary confinement, though the latter implies the former.

          • by Uberbah ( 647458 )

            He was specifically held in conditions to not allow contact with any other individuals. If it walks like solitary, talks like solitary, looks like solitary....it's probably solitary confinement.

            Tomato, tomahtoe.

            • by nasch ( 598556 )

              OK, I have no idea about the specifics of his case, just wasn't sure if you were equating no visitors with solitary confinement.

    • I don't care about what Sweden does/ That traitor Manning deserved to be in solitary.. No it is not torture and no it does not cause permanent damage.
      • by Uberbah ( 647458 )

        Insert Mark Hamill picture here, because every word you just said was false. To pick just one issue, Manning's Oath of Enlistment required her to defend the Constitution of the United States, not neocon war criminals breaking every law under the sun. She tried the vaunted 'chain of command' and was shut down, leaving a leak her only option to uphold said oath.

  • I seem to recall other, similar extradition requests - Gary McKinnon for one, but several others.

    What makes this one special?

    I seem to recall that Gary also had Asperger's and Depression... which doesn't seem to make this one a precedent at all.

  • by Solandri ( 704621 ) on Monday February 05, 2018 @02:42PM (#56071931)
    In the past, physical presence was needed to commit a crime (e.g. robbery). This had the natural result of criminals being caught in the jurisdiction in which they committed the crime. Extradition was only needed for criminals who fled the country after the crime.

    The Internet changes all that. Now it's possible to reside in one jurisdiction (country), while committing a crime in another. The legal system is just coming to grips with this. c.f. the U.S. trying to get Microsoft's server data that's stored outside the country, France trying to apply its laws to the rest of the world, Kim Dotcom arrested in New Zealand at the behest of the U.S., etc.

    Extradition agreements weren't really set up for suspects who fled to another country, not for this type of remote crime. So from this point on we'll be making up new stuff as we go along. It'll probably be a few more decades before it all gets settled down. If multiple judges rule as this judge has (and the same happens when some American kid hacks UK computers), I expect the U.S. and UK will negotiate new extradition treaties which specifically cover this type of case, thereby limiting the leeway the judge had in this particular case.
  • Britain will regret this decision. At some point in time a criminal wanted in Britain will be in the US and Trump will prevent the extradition. Tit-for-tat....

    • by Cederic ( 9623 )

      I don't care. If Lauri Love broke the law in the UK then he should be prosecuted in the UK. If he didn't break the law in the UK then he hasn't broken the law and shouldn't be extradited.

      There are no possible grounds for him being extradited to the USA. Whether the USA want to be stupid about it is irrelevant.

      • Yeah, that's not how it works. Laws were broken in both the UK and US, but the victims were in the US so under normal conditions of the extradition treaty the country where the victims are gets to try the case.
    • That comment applies to the Gary McKinnon case (where the extradition was blocked by a politician - the Home Secretary). In this case, the court system (different branch of government, in both UK and US) denied permission for the extradition. So for comparability, the US court system, not his Trumpetness, would have to deny the extradition of the hypothetical British criminal.

I have never seen anything fill up a vacuum so fast and still suck. -- Rob Pike, on X.