UK to extradite hacker with autism to US to face trial for breaking into state computers

Lauri Love (L) reacts as he leaves after his extradition hearing at Westminster Magistrates’ Court in London, Sep. 16, 2016. REUTERS

Today a court in London okayed the extradition of a British hacker with autism to the United States, where he will face trial for breaking into high-security U.S. government computers.

Lauri LoveREUTERS/Peter Nicholls

Lauri LoveREUTERS/Peter Nicholls

Lauri Love, 31, who is described in the press as “having Asperger's syndrome,” is accused in a series of 2012-2013 hacks into computers of the FBI, U.S. army, Missile Defense Agency, and Federal Reserve.

Mr. Love had asked the British court to allow him to remain in the UK. He faces life in prison under American charges, and said he might kill himself if sentenced to time in the U.S.

Lauri Love speaks to press outside of his extradition hearing at Westminster Magistrates' Court in London, Sep. 16, 2016. REUTERS/Peter Nicholls

Lauri Love speaks to press outside of his extradition hearing at Westminster Magistrates' Court in London, Sep. 16, 2016. REUTERS/Peter Nicholls

From Reuters:

"If you're here for justice, you missed it," he said quietly as he emerged from the defendants' box in court after the verdict was announced.

U.S. authorities say Love was connected to Anonymous, an international group of hackers, and argued his actions had caused millions of dollars' worth of damage.

"I accept Mr Love suffers from both physical and mental health issues but I have found the medical facilities in the United States prison estate ... are such that I can be satisfied his needs will be comprehensively met by the U.S. authorities," judge Nina Tempia said in her ruling.

Love's U.S. lawyer Tor Ekeland said the U.S. penal system would "crush" his client who suffers episodes of depression and psychosis.

"They want to destroy him because they want to use him as an example," Ekeland told Reuters.

The judge's decision must be agreed by Britain's Home Secretary (interior minister) and Love's lawyers said they would launch an appeal if it was ratified.