3 years in Belgium or 45 years in the US: Flemish hacker hopes for swifter sentence in his home country (Mechelen)

Does a lawyer try to convict his client as quickly as possible? In the case of Malinois Kevin D. (27) this is a sensible strategy. Because he is now serving 3 years in prison in his home country for stealing American Airlines computers. He faces up to 45 years in prison if extradited to the United States on the same facts.

Koen Palmers and Stijn van de Sande

Free airline tickets in American Airlines business class. Malinois Kevin D. (27) reserved for himself in 2017, thanks to his prowess in hacking computers.

He didn’t use the tickets — a “childish sin out of technical curiosity,” his attorney says. But the airline couldn’t help but laugh at the hacking. American Airlines filed a complaint with the US Department of Justice, seeking $200,000 in damages. The United States decided to identify Kevin D. internationally, but without success: our country does not hand over its own nationals to the United States.

But European countries can deport other nationalities. While visiting Milan with his father, Kevin D. Lifted from his hotel bed in October 2021. Since then, he has been in an Italian prison awaiting extradition to the United States, where he faces 22 to 45 years in prison, depending on the description.

Until Belgium decided to sue Kevin T for hacking. Then there will be priority in deportation to our country. The case came to court in Mechelen on Wednesday – “it goes without saying that we want a sentence closer to home, and the possibility of carrying out the sentence”, argued his lawyer Frédéric Thibaut in court.

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Kevin D., who has been convicted of hacking several times before, is currently serving a 3-year prison sentence in Belgium. Both sides agreed to the sentence. Especially self-defense, because you cannot be punished twice for the same crimes. Thibaud asked the court to make a decision soon, which is on Thursday. There is no longer any question of extradition to the United States.

It will not be 22 or 45 years, but if convicted, he will also receive an effective prison sentence in Belgium. According to his lawyers, Kevin D. Currently ill, “He has lost 25 kg and was full of rashes when his parents visited in June. He has a coming depression where the situation is very bad.

Kevin D.’s father died of a heart attack shortly after his arrival in an Italian prison.

Read more. Flemish hacker sentenced to 22 years in US prison for hacking website: “They took him away in handcuffs in his pyjamas” (+)

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