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Teenage Hacker Sentenced to Indefinite Hospitalization After Grand Theft Auto VI Leak


A teenager in London who hacked Rockstar Games and leaked footage of Grand Theft Auto VI has received an indefinite hospitalization order, raising questions about balancing cybercrime with mental health concerns.

Arion Kurtaj, 18, was deemed unfit to stand trial due to acute autism, according to The BBC. However, a jury found him guilty of the hack based on evidence, concluding he breached Rockstar’s servers from a budget hotel room while under police custody, using only basic equipment.

Despite Kurtaj’s attorneys arguing the leaked trailer’s massive popularity offset any harm, the judge deemed him a public safety risk due to ongoing mental health evaluations suggesting his desire to return to cybercrime. Accounts of Kurtaj’s alleged violent behavior in custody further supported the hospitalization decision.

This case represents a complex legal grey area where mental health and criminal intent collide. While Kurtaj’s actions caused significant disruption and potential financial losses for Rockstar, his condition adds a layer of ethical and practical considerations to the sentencing.

Meanwhile, another Lapsus$ member, a 17-year-old whose name remains confidential due to their age, received an 18-month youth rehabilitation order for their involvement in cyberattacks on Nvidia and BT/EE. This lighter sentence reflects the UK’s approach to juvenile offenders and highlights the varied legal repercussions within the group.

With two members caught, the chase continues for other “digital bandits” in Lapsus$, believed to be teenagers scattered across the UK and Brazil. It’s unclear if any ransom demands were met, as the targeted companies haven’t confirmed payments.

Ultimately, Kurtaj’s case sparks broader conversations about mitigating cybercrime, addressing mental health issues within the hacker community, and ensuring appropriate legal responses to complex digital landscapes.

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