Man quizzed over Pippa Matthews ‘hacking’ in US court over unrelated crimes
Nathan Wyatt has pleaded not guilty to charges he stole data from US companies and threatened to release it unless the firms paid ransom.
A British fraudster questioned over the alleged hacking of an iCloud account belonging to the Duchess of Cambridge’s sister has pleaded not guilty to charges in an unrelated case in the US.
Nathan Wyatt was arrested in 2016 by police investigating the hacking of Pippa Matthews’ account, amid reports pictures of Kate and her children, Prince George and Princess Charlotte, were among thousands of images taken.
The father-of-three was released with no further action in relation to that case in September 2017.
Wyatt has pleaded not guilty to charges alleging that he and co-conspirators in a hacking group stole data from companies in the US and threatened to release the information unless the firms paid ransom.
The 38-year-old, appeared in federal court in St Louis after he lost a long fight against his extradition to the US.
Records from Wyatt’s extradition case indicate he was charged with two counts of aggravated identity theft and three counts of threatening damage to a computer, The St Louis Post-Dispatch reported.
Wyatt and his co-conspirators are accused of accessing company data and threatening to release it publicly unless ransom was paid in the cryptocurrency bitcoin.
A judge’s opinion in Wyatt’s extradition case say the Dark Overlord hackers threatened the daughter of the owners of a healthcare company, stole money from the PayPal account of another health care provider, demanded 75,000 US dollars in bitcoin from a third healthcare company, and extorted money from a fourth healthcare company and an accounting firm.
Prosecutors have asked that Wyatt be kept in jail until trial.
Wyatt was jailed for three years in November 2017 after admitting blackmail and using a bank card in the name of his dead stepfather. He would have been released on license half-way through his sentence.
He admitted at Southwark Crown Court to 20 counts of fraud, one of possessing a false passport, and one count of blackmail in relation to a demand for 10,000 euro from a law firm.
The High Court heard in 2016 that Mrs Matthews, who was then Miss Middleton, had “good reason” to fear that all information held in her iCloud account had been hacked.
Mrs Justice Whipple made orders barring publication of photographs and other material held on the account after Mrs Matthews and her husband, then fiance, James Matthews took civil court action against a “person or persons unknown” as a result of pictures allegedly being taken from the account.