Tampa teen charged in Twitter hacking case

Tampa teen charged in Twitter hacking case
(Source: AP Photo/Jeff Chiu/AP)

TAMPA, Fla. (WWSB) - Hillsborough State Attorney Andrew Warren announced 30 felony charges against a Tampa teen accused of scamming people and perpetrating the “Bit-Con” hack of prominent Twitter accounts including Bill Gates, Barack Obama, and Elon Musk on July 15, 2020.

Investigators say Graham Ivan Clark, 17, was the mastermind of the recent hack of Twitter. Clark was arrested in Tampa early on July 31. According to court documents, Clark stole the identities of prominent people, posted messages in their names directing victims to send Bitcoin to accounts associated with Clark, and reaped more than $100,000 in Bitcoin in just one day. As a cryptocurrency, Bitcoin is difficult to track and recover if stolen in a scam.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation and the U.S. Department of Justice conducted a complex nationwide investigation, locating and apprehending the suspect in Hillsborough County.

“This defendant lives here in Tampa, he committed the crime here, and he’ll be prosecuted here,” Warren added. The Hillsborough State Attorney’s Office is prosecuting Clark because Florida law allows minors to be charged as adults in financial fraud cases such as this when appropriate. The FBI and Department of Justice will continue to partner with the office throughout the prosecution.

The specific charges Clark faces are:

ORGANIZED FRAUD (OVER $50,000) – 1 count

COMMUNICATIONS FRAUD (OVER $300) – 17 counts

FRAUDULENT USE OF PERSONAL INFORMATION (OVER $100,000 OR 30 OR MORE VICTIMS) – 1 count

FRAUDULENT USE OF PERSONAL INFORMATION – 10 counts

ACCESS COMPUTER OR ELECTRONIC DEVICE WITHOUT AUTHORITY (SCHEME TO DEFRAUD) – 1 count

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