A still from the Grand Theft Auto VI trailer.
Photo: Rockstar Games
A teenage hacker was sentenced by a judge in the United Kingdom to an indefinite sentence for his role in the hack of Rockstar Games, the video-game company behind the Grand Theft Auto series.
The BBC reports that Arion Kurtaj, an 18-year-old from Oxford, was sentenced on Thursday to an indefinite period at a hospital, to be released only when doctors find that he is no longer a danger. Because Kurtaj has acute autism, doctors determined that the jury that heard his trial earlier this year would only determine if he committed the crime — not if he had criminal intent.
The unusual sentencing is the latest twist in the unapproved release last year of clips from the upcoming Grand Theft Auto VI. According to prosecutors, Kurtaj was part of a cybercriminal group called Lapsus$, which was also responsible for hacks last year of Microsoft and Uber. Out on bail for allegedly hacking the hardware company Nvidia, Kurtaj, prosecutors say, pulled off the GTA heist while staying under police protection at a Travelodge hotel. Without his computer, he somehow managed to hack into Rockstar using his smartphone, an Amazon Firestick, and the TV in his hotel room. BBC reports that the judge on the case found that Kurtaj’s skill set and willingness to keep hacking while on parole suggested that he remained a risk; prosecutors also stated that he was violent while in custody, causing injury and property damage.