British hacker spared extradition to US, deemed suicide risk
LONDON (REUTERS) - A British computer hacker accused by the United States (US) of breaking into military systems will be spared from extradition because he is at risk of committing suicide, interior minister Theresa May said on Tuesday.
Mr Gary McKinnon, who has been fighting extradition for seven years, faced up to 60 years in an American jail if found guilty of what one US prosecutor called the "biggest military computer hack of all time".
"I have concluded that Mr McKinnon's extradition would give rise to such a high risk of him ending his life that a decision to extradite would be incompatible with Mr McKinnon's human rights," Ms May told parliament "I have therefore withdrawn the extradition order against Mr McKinnon."
The 46-year-old claimed he had accessed the 97 US government computers to hunt for evidence of extraterrestrial life.