23 Jun 2011

Accused hacker Ryan Cleary ‘keen’ to assist police

A 19-year-old charged with carrying out a cyber attack on the UK’s Serious Organised Crime Agency is said to be “keen” to help with the police investigation. Ryan Cleary has appeared in court.

Cyber crime: alleged teen hacker remanded in custody. (Getty)

A teenager accused of carrying out computer hacks against several websites, including the UK’s Serious Organised Crime Agency (Soca) has been remanded in custody.

Ryan Cleary, 19, from Wickford in Essex, did not enter any plea to five offences under the Criminal Law and Computer Misuse Act when he appeared at City of Westminster Magistrates’ Court.

His lawyer Ben Cooper said: “He has been assisting with police inquiries so far and is keen to continue doing so.”

He added: “My client is a vulnerable young man and there are certain matters which are being looked into with regards to his vulnerability.”

Mr Cleary was arrested at his family home (pictured) earlier this week as part of international efforts by the Metropolitan Police and America’s Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) to trace members of hacking group LulzSec.

In court, Mr Cleary wore a white T-shirt and looked nervous and tired as he stood in the secure dock. His mother, Rita Cleary, sat in the public gallery. She did not comment as she left court.

The teenager is expected to apply for bail at the next hearing.

Mr Cleary has been detained at London’s Charing Cross police station for further questioning.

LulzSec Twitter icon.

LulzSec made up of ‘six to 10 members’

The mysterious LulzSec collective is believed to be made up of six main members. It has previously claimed responsibility for cyber attacks on Soca, the US Senate and the CIA.

Matthew TK Taylor, a student tech journalist, told Channel 4 News: “Hacker groups can really be of any size, famous Chinese groups have apparently hit 80,000 members. The difficulty in large groups is keeping secret information secret, so by that you would have to limit core membership.

“I doubt anywhere near the 80,000 Chinese members were all active, more likely supporters or donors to the cause and would say that six is accurate for LulzSec and I wouldn’t expect for them to have more than about 10.”

LulzSec has denied Ryan Cleary was one of their members.