Defendant Sentenced in Alleged FIFA Soccer Computer Hacking Ring
Fort Worth, TX (Law Firm Newswire) May 26, 2017 – A federal district court recently sentenced a 23-year-old member of an alleged computer hacking ring to probation.
The defendant, Ricky Miller, was charged with conspiring to hack into EA Sports and Microsoft computer servers and mining nearly $16 million worth of virtual coins for sale on the black market. The case, United States v. Ricky Miller, charged a conspiracy to commit computer fraud in violation of 18 U.S.C. sections 371 and 1030. The court granted Mr. Miller’s attorney’s plea for a sentence of probation, despite the magnitude of alleged losses.
Counsel for Mr. Miller, Jason B. Freeman, a white-collar defense attorney with Freeman Law in Dallas, praised the court’s “thoughtful sentence and willingness to look at all of the factors,” commenting that “the case presented complex and mitigating circumstances” and “the court’s sentence of probation, while well below the statutory maximum, was the right outcome.” He also commended the U.S. Attorney’s Office and FBI for their professionalism and work on the case.
The defendant’s group, formally known as RANE Development, allegedly used stolen source code and unlicensed developer kits to create a program that circumvented EA Sports and Microsoft security measures, causing EA servers to believe thousands of soccer matches were being completed in just seconds. In turn, EA servers awarded the group a massive number of in-game virtual coins, known as “FIFA coins.” Prosecutors alleged the group then sold those FIFA coins to dealers in Europe and China on the black market for millions of dollars.
Freeman noted that navigating and defending charges under the federal computer intrusion statutes — what he described as the “crime of the future” — requires a “keen understanding of the technological, legal, and social issues at play.” “These types of cases will require a new breed of ‘white-collar’ lawyers with a new skillset and new perspective,” Freeman said.
About Freeman Law
Freeman Law is a tax, white-collar, and litigation law firm based in the DFW Metroplex serving clients around the world. Founded by a dual-credentialed attorney-CPA and law professor, Freeman Law offers unique and valued counsel, insight, and experience.
Jason B. Freeman, J.D., CPA
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