A Romanian man suspected of being the notorious hacker Guccifer has been arrested on Wednesday by Romanian authorities. The 40-year-old had already been sentenced to three years of supervised release in February 2012 for similar crimes.
According to Romania’s Directorate for Investigating Organized Crime and Terrorism (DIICOT), Marcel Lazăr Lehel’s home in Arad county has been searched.
Authorities suspect that the man “accessed, repeatedly and without authorization, by bypassing security measures, email accounts belonging to public figures from Romania, with the purpose of gaining possession of confidential information found in their electronic mailboxes.”
The Romanian public figures that DIICOT is referring to are politician Corina Cretu, whom the hacker accused of having an affair with former US Secretary of State Colin Powell, and George Maior, the head of the Romanian Intelligence Service (SRI).
Shortly after Maior’s email account was hacked, SRI representatives noted that they were confident the hacker would be caught. If Lehel is in fact Guccifer, they knew what they were talking about.
Lehel is also accused of leaking his victims’ private correspondence in an effort to ruin their public image.
In a statement to the press, DIICOT representatives have also highlighted the fact that the law enforcement organization has cooperated with US authorities on this case.
Most of Guccifer’s victims are entertainers, officials, diplomats and other high-profile individuals from the United States. The list includes members of the Bush family, comedian Steve Martin, former Air Force Secretary, George Roche, members of the Council on Foreign Relations, members of the UK’s House of Lords and many others.
Romanian publication Gandul reports that Lehel was previously arrested in August 2011 for hacking the email and Facebook accounts of various public figures from Romania, including politicians, actors, football players, and singers.