UK will not extradite hacker McKinnon to U.S. because of health concerns
Gary McKinnon pictured at a press conference in London, on January 15, 2009.
October 16th, 2012
07:43 AM ET

UK will not extradite hacker McKinnon to U.S. because of health concerns

A man accused of hacking into Pentagon and NASA computers will not be extradited from the United Kingdom to the Unites States because of health concerns, Home Secretary Theresa May said on Tuesday.

Gary McKinnon has admitted to breaking into computers  - but says he did so to find out if the U.S. government was covering up the existence of UFOs.

McKinnon's lawyer, Karen Todner, has fought extradition on human rights grounds because McKinnon has Asperger syndrome.

May said McKinnon's Asperger syndrome and depressive illness meant "there is such a high risk of him ending his own life that a decision to extradite would be incompatible with his human rights."

The U.S. government says McKinnon accessed 97 computers from his home in London for a year starting in March 2001, and costing the government about $1 million.

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soundoff (45 Responses)
  1. @tony?

    Domestic terrorism, or international? Pls. be more specific. ty

    October 16, 2012 at 10:36 am | Report abuse |
  2. Dan

    This guy just looks crooked. Look at his slanty eyes. He looks like an evil villain.

    October 16, 2012 at 10:45 am | Report abuse |
    • Gray Owl

      Agreed. He looks like one of those smart alek young people. Just like my grandkids – rude and ungrateful.

      October 16, 2012 at 4:59 pm | Report abuse |
  3. saywhat

    This back and forth extradition games, no longer. A special tribunal in the Hague to try these criminals since the crime is now becoming universal. The perps no longer typical to China. All those convicted to be sent to Gitmo. lol

    October 16, 2012 at 10:46 am | Report abuse |
  4. BOMBO ©

    Ass Burger Syndrome. I'll have to remember that if I'm ever in Britain and up for extradition somewhere.

    October 16, 2012 at 11:28 am | Report abuse |
  5. Portland tony

    The offence occurred in the 2001-2003 timeframe and was done by a mildly autistic young man from his bedroom. Asperger Syndrome is no laughing matter as can be attested to by those raising a child so afflicted. Hopefully the US government has improved its security since then. We spend billions of dollars on cybersecurity annually. Lets hope we can stop individuals with 2001 technology from hacking our computers from their bedroom. Our enemies have a little more technology available. By going after a mentally limited young man in Britain for looking for UFOS, we are endangering the entire extradition treaty with Great Britain.

    October 16, 2012 at 12:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • ukrepublic

      The best comment posted, The USA must look at their security issues.

      October 16, 2012 at 12:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • banasy©

      I agree totally, Portland tony.

      October 16, 2012 at 1:46 pm | Report abuse |
  6. ukrepublic

    Tough luck USA, at last we have stood up!! Maybe, next time when you want us to go to war, we'll just say 'Bugger off' & you can take your chance with France / Germany etc.
    Just think, a UK kid beat the Pentagon & NASA. I think that's why your upset.

    October 16, 2012 at 12:19 pm | Report abuse |
  7. hogwash

    The US government does what is tantamount to to not allowing you to secure your own home: Limit security encryption for citizens.
    While governments run 2000 bit (plus) security encryption, citizens are limited to about 10% of that for their own PCs, by law.
    A citizen should be allowed to use however many deadbolts they want to secure their homes and PCs.

    October 16, 2012 at 12:36 pm | Report abuse |
  8. hogwash

    For a fact, State Hospitals allow their patients to form their own community and do not interfere with patients se xual relations.
    How is it that you wish the government to police State Hospital bedrooms but not your own? (double standard)

    October 16, 2012 at 12:40 pm | Report abuse |
  9. just eye

    Why are these computers with sensitive data even tied into the world network? The answer is they want them to be, for this reason. Wouldn`t be surprised at all if this data he stole wasnt completely made up and dropped in the machines he attacked.

    October 16, 2012 at 12:47 pm | Report abuse |
  10. hogwash

    ...and, people don't "seek help" at State Hospitals. State Hospitals are where families dump their unwanted and where criminal courts dump criminals who "need help" rather than punishment for crimes.
    Really. Our State Hospitals are overcrowded because so many convicted criminals live there instead of prison where they belong.
    A mentally challenged 50 yr. old might have the mind of a child, but we do prosecute children for crimes and send them to prisons.

    October 16, 2012 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
  11. hEy LaDy

    He clearly posted government "State Hospital". How you read private "Mental hospital" is covered in the NATIONAL adult Literacy Survey 2002-2006.1/4 (23.7%) of US adults simply cannot grasp text(written paragraphs) without pictures to help them understand what was written.

    October 16, 2012 at 1:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • banasy©

      There are two state mental hospitals in Colorado; Colorado Mental Health Insti tute at Pueblo, and Colorado Mental Health Insti tute at Fort Logan.
      Which one of these hospitals are you referring to, hogwash/hEy LaDy, when you talk about patients having relations with each other?

      October 16, 2012 at 4:21 pm | Report abuse |
  12. hEy LaDy

    ...like those who need pictures or they'll never get that child safety seat installed properly.
    Child safety seat instructions used to be written on the 10th grade level, and with few, if any, pictures.
    Now they are written on the 8th grade level with many pictures. Further proof that we aren't getting smarter as a peoples.

    October 16, 2012 at 1:44 pm | Report abuse |
  13. banasy©

    "Mouse in Pocket Syndrome" has raised it's head again.
    Sadly, there is no cure.

    October 16, 2012 at 2:55 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Colorado State Hospital, Grand Jct., CO

    State Hospital staff do not police the bedroom antics of residents. Each resident, even those awaiting their se x offender trials, is allowed to carry-on with their preferred se xual activities.
    Why do you think that it's not OK for the government to police your bedroom and at the same time assume State Hospital bedrooms are policed?

    October 16, 2012 at 6:35 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Philip

    Colorado has the highest per-capita prison population on planet earth.
    I've been speaking-out against our justice system warehouseing both convicted se x offenders and those awaiting their court cases to be heard. How this got twisted into my wanting true mental patients mistreated is beyond me.
    Many residents of our State-ran hospitals are little more than criminals addicted to prescription drugs. In my own and in the opinions of a million other residents, these men should be in prisons, not hosptials. If you feel otherwise, so be it.

    October 16, 2012 at 6:47 pm | Report abuse |
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