West News Wire: According to U.K. authorities, a computer hacker who stole unreleased music from American rapper Lil Uzi Vert and British pop sensation Ed Sheeran has been given an 18-month prison sentence.

Adrian Kwiatkowski, 23, from Ipswich in southern England, gained access to the musicians’ cloud-based accounts and sold their music for cryptocurrencies on the dark web. According to City of London Police, who looked into the matter, Kwiatkowski made 147,000 pounds ($131,000) from the deals.

According to Joanne Jakymec of the Crown Prosecution Service, “Kwiatkowski exhibited utter contempt for the musicians’ ingenuity, toil, and loss of revenue in creating creative tunes. He stole their music out of self-interest in order to profit.

In August, Kwiatkowski pleaded guilty to a variety of charges, including 14 copyright offenses and three counts of computer misuse. He was sentenced Friday in Ipswich Crown Court.

City of London Police worked with authorities in the United States to investigate the case after the management companies of several musicians reported that an individual, known online as Spirdark, had gained access to their clients’ cloud-based accounts and was selling their content.

The Manhattan District Attorney’s Office launched an investigation in 2019, and linked the email address used for Spirdark’s cryptocurrency account to Kwiatkowski. It then identified the IP address of the device used to hack one of the accounts as his home address.

After further investigation, Kwiatkowski was arrested by the City of London Police’s Intellectual Property Crime Unit in September 2019.

“Cybercrime knows no borders, and this individual executed a complex scheme to steal unreleased music in order to line his own pockets,’’ Manhattan District Attorney Alvin L Bragg Jr said.

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