A talented, computer security “superstar” consultant was sentenced to 13 years in federal prison for stealing nearly 2 million credits credits, which caused fraudulent charges of $86.4 million.
Max Ray Vision, formerly Max Butler, was convicted in Pittsburgh and fined $27.5 million in restitution, reports Wired.
In an odd twist, it was Vision’s demeanor that saved him from life in prison. Prosecutor Luke Dembosky recommended the 13-year sentence (a record for a hacking sentence) due to Vision’s cooperation, calling him “a likable person” who is “almost wide-eyed and optimistic in his view of the world.”
Vision was a consultant in the late 1990s, but was hacking on the side. A short stint in federal prison in 2001 (he was convicted of attacking Pentagon systems) landed him in a more serious ring of criminals, including a California bank robber who became Vision’s partner.
The two sold credit card numbers and created counterfeit cards, but Vision apparently earned less than a million dollars before he was arrested in September 2007.
Read the whole nerd drama on Wired’s Threat Level blog.
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