Ed Sheeran's Music Pirate Jailed

A hacker who stole two of the British pop star Ed Sheeran unreleased songs and sold them on the Dark Web has been jailed for 18 months. Adrian Kwiatkowski, a 23-year-old from Ipswich, traded the music of Sheeran and a dozen songs from the rapper Lil Uzi Vert and others. He managed to get hold of them after hacking the performers' digital accounts, the UK Crown Prosecution Service has said.

Kwiatkowski has admitted 19 charges, including copyright infringement and possessing criminal property.
He had made £131k ($147k) from the music, City of London Police said.

An investigation was initially launched by US authorities in 2019. This investigation began when several musicians reported to the New York District Attorney that someone known online as Spirdark had hacked a number of accounts and was selling their content. The investigation linked the email address used to set up Spirdark's crypto currency account to Kwiatkowski. His home address in the UK was also linked to an IP address used to hack one of the devices. The case was then referred to the City of London Police and Kwiatkowski was arrested in September 2019.

According to police, seven devices, including a hard drive that contained 1,263 unreleased songs by 89 artists, were seized. A document saved on the hard drive summarised the method he had used to obtain them along with an unknown quantity of Bitcoin which was seized.

Kwiatkowski pleaded guilty at Ito three charges of unauthorised access to computer material, 14 charges of selling copyrighted material, one charge of converting criminal property and two charges of possession of criminal property. He also admitted receiving bitcoin crypto currency for the songs. 

Billboard:      1New3:      BBC:    Vulture:     Yahoo:       NBC:     Ceylon Today

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