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Teen hacker behind GTA VI leak given indefinite hospital order

Teen hacker behind GTA VI leak given indefinite hospital order

A key member of the LapsusS hacking gang has been sentenced.

A teenager who leaked clips of an upcoming Grand Theft Auto game during a hacking spree has been sentenced to a hospital order, according to court staff.

Arion Kurtaj, 18, and a 17-year-old who cannot be named for legal reasons were described by the prosecution as the “key players” in the LapsusS hacking group.

Psychiatrists had assessed Kurtaj as unfit to stand trial so the role of the jury in his case was to decide whether he had committed the acts alleged against him.

GTA VI is set to come out in 2025.
Rockstar Games

Following a two-month trial at London’s Southwark Crown Court plus nine hours and 19 minutes of deliberations, a jury unanimously found Kurtaj had carried out 12 offences in his spree of innovative hacks.

These offences included six counts of carrying out an unauthorised act to impair the operation of a computer, three counts of blackmail, two fraud offences, and failing to comply with a section 49 notice to disclose a key when he did not give up the password to his mobile phone when asked to by police.

He tried to blackmail Rockstar Games by threatening to “leak the stolen source code for the Grand Theft Auto sequel on to internet forums”, the indictment stated.

Kurtaj and the youth were also accused of hacking software company Nvidia in February 2022 before threatening to “release Nvidia Corporation’s intellectual property on to the web” if it did not pay them.

The new game will be set in Vice City.
Rockstar Games/YouTube

At a sentencing hearing at Guildford Crown Court on Thursday, Kurtaj was given a hospital order, meaning he will remain at a secure hospital unless doctors deem him no longer a danger, a court worker confirmed to UniladTech.

Kurtaj’s defence counsel David Miller described the youngster as “the most vulnerable of adolescents” who was now pitted against huge companies and corporations worth billions, who had unlimited funds and unlimited resources including the FBI, National Crime Agency, Interpol and City of London Police.

The trailer for GTA VI dropped earlier this month, becoming the most viewed videogame trailer within 24 hours, clocking up 90,421,491 views on YouTube in a single day.

The game is set to come out in 2025, although an exact release date hasn't been confirmed.

Featured Image Credit: BBC / Rockstar Games