2 LulzSec hackers spared jail time in Ireland

The first hackers ever successfully prosecuted in Ireland have finished a sentence diversion program and will avoid one-year jail sentences and criminal records.

In July, Judge Ann Ryan ordered the Irish LulzSec hackers, “Pwnsauce” and “Palladium”—known to the court as 21-year-old Darren Martyn of Galway and Donnacha O’Cearbhaill, 20, from Offaly, respectively—to participate in the “restorative justice programme,” since neither had any criminal record.

On Jan. 9, 2011, seven weeks before Ireland’s general election, the pair hacked the Fine Gael party’s election website, defaced it, knocked it offline for a day, and stole its database.

Having been identified by the the Garda Bureau of Fraud Investigation, in conjunction with the FBI, they were arrested and in July plead guilty to the charge of “criminal damage.”

Yesterday in Dublin District Court, Ryan accepted payment of €5,000 each ($6,756) for the costs associated with the pair’s defacement of the site, finegael2011.ie.

Half of the fine will go to the suicide prevention charity Pieta House, with the rest being used to cover the party’s legal costs.

Martyn studies forensic science and analysis at Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology and served as a local chapter leader of the Open Web Application Security Project, which develops open-source security apps. O’Cearbhaill is a medical chemistry student at Trinity College.

Both men were named in the same original U.S. grand jury indictment that accused two other alleged LulzSec members, Jake Davis (“Topiary”) and Ryan Ackroyd (“Kayla”) of hacking the Fox Network, Sony Pictures, and PBS.

H/T RTE | Photo by Mick Hunt/Flickr

Curt Hopkins

Curt Hopkins

Curt Hopkins has over two decades of experience as a journalist, editorial strategist, and social media manager. His work has been published by Ars Technica, Reuters, Los Angeles Times, and San Francisco Chronicle. He is the also founding director of the Committee to Protect Bloggers, the first organization devoted to global free speech rights for bloggers