- The Washington Times - Saturday, April 21, 2018

A British teenager who pleaded guilty to hacking high-ranking Obama administration officials has been handed a sentence of two years at a youth detention center.

Kane Gamble, 18, learned his fate in a London court Friday nearly three years after he started an international hacking spree that claimed victims including the former heads of CIA and Department of Homeland Security.

Starting when he was just 15, Gamble committed a slew of hacks targeting American victims that the presiding judge described during Friday’s sentencing hearing as an “extremely nasty campaign of politically motivated cyber terrorism,” The Guardian reported.

Gamble’s crimes include compromising the personal email account of then-CIA Director John Brennan and stealing correspondence subsequently published by WikiLeaks; hacking into a television installed at the home of then-DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson; and harassing the family of Mark Giuliano, the FBI’s former second-in-command.

Gamble was arrested in 2016 and pleaded guilty last year to 10 counts of illegal hacking, but his identity and information about the case were withheld until after he turned 18 last October.

The teenage hacker successfully compromised “extremely sensitive” U.S. documents, including material regarding military and intelligence operations in Afghanistan and Iraq, according to prosecutor John Lloyd-Jones.

Defense attorney William Harbage portrayed Gamble as an ideological teenager who hoped to effect change with his exploits, U.K. media reported.

“In a naive, immature and childish way, he thought he could do something about it, he could make a nuisance of himself by targeting people in America and that would somehow get them to change US policy as a result of what he was doing from his bedroom,” said Mr. Harbage, according to The Guardian.

Gamble had boasted online about his exploits using the alias “Cracka,” and claimed to be a founding member of “Crackas With Attitude,” a hacking group that together targeted several high-ranking U.S. officials, according to the Department of Justice.

Two North Carolina residents, Justin Liverman and Andrew Boggs, last year received 60- and 24-month federal prison sentences, respectively, for convictions related to their involvement in Crackas With Attitude. Combined the hackers claimed at least 10 victims and caused about $1.5 million in damages, according to the Justice Department.

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