Now that court documents have been unsealed, new details have emerged about Hector Xavier Monsegur, better known as LulzSec leader “Sabu” whose cooperation with the FBI helped facilitate an international raid on his top deputies earlier this week. Apparently in addition to being kind of a crappy neighbor, prone to noisy wrestling and rapping at the Jacob Riis housing projects on the Lower East Side, Mr. Monsegur was also a pretty willing informant.
Authorities were particularly careful about sealing documents related to Mr. Monsegur’s arrest, noting that many LulzSec members knew his real identity and that hackers monitor public court dockets (how diligent!) and “dox” suspected government informants.
But we now know that Mr. Monsegur pleaded guilty to 12 criminal charges, including “three counts of conspiracy to engage in computer hacking, computer hacking in furtherance of fraud, conspiracy to commit access device fraud, conspiracy to commit bank fraud and aggravated identity theft,” reports the Wall Street Journal. For those charges, he faces up to 124 years in prison.
Considering that sentence and the fact that Mr. Monsegur is a foster parent to his two nieces, it’s not hard to imagine why he would be willing to cooperate (even though it made Anonymous sad.) But in court transcripts, the authorities intimated that Sabu went above-and-beyond.
“Since literally the day he was arrested, the defendant has been cooperating with the government proactively,” sometimes staying up all night engaging in conversations with co-conspirators to help the government build cases against them, Assistant U.S. Attorney James Pastore said at a secret bail hearing on Aug. 5, 2011, according to a transcript released on Thursday.
During the course of his cooperation, the feds said Mr. Monsegur received intel about “upwards of two dozen [online security] vulnerabilities” daily from his fellow cyber-criminals. If this is their way of scaring the hackers who were indicted earlier this week, we’re pretty sure its working.