British teen bailed over hacking claims

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A British teenager charged with attacking websites as part of the international hacking group Lulz Security was released by a court on bail Monday after being diagnosed with autism.

Ryan Cleary, 19, was arrested one week ago and charged two days later with offences including hacking into the website of the Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA), the British equivalent of the FBI.

A court on Saturday ordered him to be freed after his defence team said he had been diagnosed with Asperger's syndrome, a form of autism, but prosecutors immediately appealed against that decision.

On Monday however Judge Nicholas Loraine-Smith granted Cleary bail on the condition that the teenager observes a curfew from 9:00 am to 7:00 pm, wears an electronic tag and only leaves the house with his parents.

He is not allowed to access the Internet or possess any devices capable of going online.

Cleary's mother Rita told the court she would agree to any bail conditions, saying that her son was "my life" and that she was his "his best friend as well as his mother, because he's reclusive."

Police arrested Cleary on Monday last week at his home in Wickford, southeast England, as part of a probe by Scotland Yard and the US Federal Bureau of Investigation into Lulz Security.

Lulz has claimed responsibility for a 50-day rampage against international businesses and government agencies, including the Central Intelligence Agency and Senate in the United States and electronics giant Sony.

The group said in a statement on Saturday that it had disbanded.

© 2011 AFP

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