U.K. man implicated in Twitter hacking charged in NY with cryptocurrency theft

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22-year-old British national Joseph James O'Connor is pb by Spanish constabulary officers arsenic helium leaves a tribunal aft being arrested successful transportation with an alleged July 2020 Twitter hack which compromised the accounts of high-profile politicians and celebrities, according to the U.S. Justice Department, successful Estepona, Spain, July 22, 2021. REUTERS/Jon Nazca

NEW YORK, Nov 3 (Reuters) - A U.K. antheral antecedently charged successful the United States with engagement successful the hacking of politicians' and celebrities' Twitter accounts was charged connected Wednesday implicit a abstracted strategy resulting successful the theft of $784,000 of cryptocurrency.

U.S. prosecutors successful Manhattan said Joseph James O'Connor, 22, and his accomplices stole bitcoin, Ethereum and Litecoin aft gaining power of victims' cellphone numbers by linking them to subscriber individuality module cards, oregon SIM cards.

O'Connor, besides known arsenic PlugwalkJoe, and his accomplices conducted alleged SIM swap attacks targeting 3 executives of a Manhattan cryptocurrency company, stole cryptocurrency from 2 clients, and laundered what they stole, prosecutors said.

A lawyer for O'Connor could not instantly beryllium identified. Prosecutors said the strategy ran from March to May 2019.

O'Connor has been awaiting imaginable extradition from Spain pursuing his July 21 arrest concerning a July 2020 hacking that compromised dozens of Twitter accounts and allegedly netted much than $118,000 of bitcoin.

The accounts included those of existent U.S. President Joe Biden, erstwhile President Barack Obama, Amazon.com's Jeff Bezos, Warren Buffett, Bill Gates, Tesla's Elon Musk, world TV prima Kim Kardashian and Ye, the rapper erstwhile known arsenic Kanye West.

Graham Ivan Clark, the accused teenage mastermind of the Twitter hacking, pleaded guilty successful March successful a Florida authorities tribunal and agreed to service 3 years successful a juvenile prison.

Wednesday's charges against O'Connor see conspiracies to perpetrate ligament fraud and wealth laundering, each carrying a maximum 20-year situation term, arsenic good arsenic aggravated individuality theft and conspiracy to perpetrate machine hacking.

Reporting by Jonathan Stempel successful New York; Editing by David Gregorio

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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