The alleged ringleader behind the 15 July Twitter hack has enough wealth in Bitcoin (BTC) to pay his bail, which was set at $725,000, the Tampa Bay Times reported on 2 August.
According to the publication, the 17 year old Graham Ivan Clark is said to have in his possession 300 BTC (currently worth around $3.4 million), which is more than enough for him to pay his bail of $725,000. The bail was set at six times the amount it is speculated the teenager stole, around $117,000 worth in BTC, during the July Twitter hack, which affected many top Twitter accounts, including Elon Musk, Joe Biden and Bill Gates.
Clark and two others were arrested on Friday under the allegation that they took part in the massive breach on Twitter. According to an article from The Verge, the FBI, IRS, US Secret Service and Florida law enforcement have accused Clark of being the “mastermind” behind the entire operation, which is the largest security and privacy breach in the history of Twitter. He now stands accused on 17 counts of communications fraud, 11 counts of fraudulent use of personal information, breaking into an electronic device, and organized fraud.
On 31 July, the U.S. Department of Justice (DoJ) released a statement accusing 19 year old U.K. resident Mason Sheppard, known as “Chaewon”, and 22 year old Florida resident Nima Fazeli, known as “Rolex”, and an unnamed “Juvenile” from Florida as the culprits in the Twitter hack. Sheppard was charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud, money laundering, and the intentional access of a protected computer, while Fazeli was charged with aiding and abetting the intentional access of a protected computer.
The Acting Assistant Attorney General Brian C. Rabbitt of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division said in a statement:
“The hackers allegedly compromised over 100 social media accounts and scammed both the account users and others who sent money based on their fraudulent solicitations. The rapid investigation of this conduct is a testament to the expertise of our investigators, our commitment to responding quickly to cyber attacks, and the close relationships we have built with law enforcement partners throughout the world.”
Last year, during an investigation, authorities confiscated around 400 BTC from Clark, and later returned only 300. Prosecutors have tried to suggest the the teenager’s BTC fortune was illegally acquired, but his attorney has continued to claim that the funds were legitimate as they were returned by the authorities at the time.