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Swede indicted for NASA computer hack

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07:13 CEST+02:00
US authorities announced on Tuesday the indictment of a 21-year-old Swede on charges of hacking into computer systems at the NASA space agency and US networking giant Cisco.

Philip Gabriel Pettersson, also known as "Stakkato," was indicted on charges of intrusion and misappropriating trade secrets, the US Department of Justice said in a statement.

Pettersson was accused in the five-count indictment of breaking into the computer system and network of San Jose, California-based Cisco in May 2004 and stealing operating system code.

The then 16-year-old Swede allegedly broke into computers belonging to the US space agency NASA's Ames Research Center and the NASA Advanced Supercomputing Division in Moffett Field, California, in May and October of the same year.

The Justice Department did not provide Pettersson's current whereabouts but said it will "continue to work cooperatively with the Swedish authorities on the case."

It said the maximum penalty for each charge of intrusion and theft of trade secrets is 10 years in prison and a fine of 250,000 dollars.

In 2007, Pettersson was convicted by the Svea Court of Appeal for gaining unauthorized access into computer networks of several Swedish universities and colleges.

He was handed a suspended sentence and ordered to pay total damages of 181,467 kronor ($22,100) to several of the colleges and universities.

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