Zynga Chip Thief Gets Two Year Prison Sentence

March 23, 2011 -

The man accused of stealing $12 million worth of chips from Zynga Poker users has been sentenced to two years in a UK prison, according to eWeek Europe, and faces additional charges related to a 2008 hacking charge. 29-year-old Ashley Mitchell was sentenced for hacking into Zynga Poker servers and stealing billions in chips valued at around $12 million. He then took the virtual currency and tried to sell it on eBay at deep discounts. He managed to unload about a third of the chips for $85,700 before authorities caught up with him.

This week he pled guilty to four counts of "converting criminal property" and one count of "securing unauthorized access to a computer with intent to commit an offense." Mitchell claimed that he was struggling with a gambling addiction and he stole the chips to pay off several online gambling debts. While Mitchell had hoped for some leniency from the court for pleading guilty, it did not seem like the court was in the mood.

In addition to the two years in prison, Mitchell faces an additional 30 weeks in jail for breaching a 2008 sentencing condition related to a prior conviction for hacking.

"People rely on computer systems," said Exeter Crown Court Judge Philip Wassall prior to handing down his sentence. "Anyone who has managed to get into these systems for their own ends should expect a stiff sentence."

Source: The Escapist


Comments

Re: Zynga Chip Thief Gets Two Year Prison Sentence

How long is it going to be before we hear the story about him being hired by an internet security firm?

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Ben "Scorp" Stanton

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Ben "Scorp" Stanton

Re: Zynga Chip Thief Gets Two Year Prison Sentence

How did he think he could get away with it?

I'm glad he's been sentenced, though I'm not sure I like the judge's quote, it doesn't quite read as being from someone who understands modern technology.

 
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