Man convicted for hacking hospital computer network

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BOSTON (AP) — A Massachusetts man was convicted by a federal jury for attacking the computer network of a world-renowned hospital.

Prosecutors said 32-year-old Martin Gottesfeld was convicted Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Boston on two counts related to attempting to damage and damaging protected computers.

Gottesfeld acknowledged that he launched a computer network attack against Boston Children's Hospital and Wayside Youth & Family Support Network in 2014.

The attack on the Children's Hospital flooded 65,000 IP addresses with junk data, and disrupted the facility's network for at least two weeks. Prosecutors said it cost the hospital about $600,000.

Gottesfeld is a self-proclaimed member of Anonymous, an international decentralizing hacktivist group, and said he launched the attacks on behalf of the group. After being charged for conspiracy, he fled Massachusetts and was later arrested by the FBI.

He previously said he did this to protest the treatment of Connecticut teenager Justina Pelletier, who was at the center of a custody fight between Massachusetts and her parents. The dispute was based on conflicting medical diagnoses.

Gottesfeld went on a hunger strike that ended in January 2017. He said his reasoning was to bring attention to the treatment of troubled youths by medical institutions and by prosecutors he said are overzealous.

Gottesfeld will be sentenced in November. The conspiracy charge carries a sentence of no greater than five years in prison, three years of supervised release, a fine of $250,000 and restitution. The charge of damaging protected computers calls for a sentence of no greater than 10 years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000.

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