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Hacker pleads guilty to theft of virtual poker chips

03 February 2011  |  10453 views  |  0 US note back

A UK man has pleaded guilty to hacking online gaming firm Zynga and stealing 400 million poker chips with a face value of £7.4 million.

Exeter Crown Court was told that Ashley Mitchell perpetrated the theft over a three-month period last year. He is said to have posed as an administrator for the Zynga Poker game on Facebook in order to access the computer systems for the game and steal the chips.

He then traded about one-third of the chips via a series of bogus Facebook accounts, netting £53,000 in the process.

Mitchell was caught when Zynga rumbled the crime and set up a sting operation to entrap the thief.

In court, he pleaded guilty to five charges brought under the Computer Misuse Act and the Proceeds from Crime Act.

The judge warned that Mitchell faces a "lenthy prison sentence" for the crime, which was carried out while he was on probation for another hack attack on a local council.

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