Graham Ivan Clark, 17, of Tampa, Florida, United States has 300 bitcoin, which is currently worth about $3.35 million. This was revealed by his lawyer David Weisbrod.
The bitcoin must be illegally obtained, the prosecutors noted. Weisbrod denied this and pointed out that in 2019, Clark was the subject of a criminal investigation in which Florida prosecutors seized $15,000 and 400 bitcoin and returned the cash and 300 bitcoin.
“I can think of no greater indication of legitimacy than law enforcement giving the money back,” Yahoo! Finance quoted Weisbrod as saying. It was not explained why only 300 bitcoin was returned to his client in 2019.
Prosecuted as an adult by the Hillsborough State Attorney’s Office, Clark is the accused of being the mastermind of the biggest security and privacy breach in Twitter’s history. He was charged with one count of organized fraud, 17 counts of communications fraud, one count of fraudulent use of personal information with over $100,000 or 30 or more victims, 10 counts of fraudulent use of personal information and one count of access to computer or electronic device without authority.
On July 31, 2020, Clark was arrested and booked into Hillsborough County Jail in Tampa. While in jail, he made his first appearance in court on August 1, 2020 via a video screen in a small courtroom in front of County Judge Joelle Ann Ober inside the Hillsborough County Courthouse Annex building in Tampa.
Ober decided to set bail at $25,000 for each of the 29 counts Clark was charged with, which is a total of $725,000. For the 30th charge, he was ordered to wear an electronic monitor and be confined to his home if he posts bail except for visits to the doctor or his attorney.
Hillsborough Assistant State Attorney Darrell Dean Dirks called Florida Department of Law Enforcement special agent Corey Monaghan to testify. Clark hired two proxies namely Mason John Sheppard, 19, of Bognor Regis, West Sussex, England, United Kingdom and Nima Fazeli, 22, of Orlando, Florida, USA who manipulated Twitter employees into giving up access to the company’s system, the Tampa Bay Times quoted the agent as saying.
On July 15, 2020, Clark earned $117,000 within a matter of hours. This was after he hacked almost 130 Twitter accounts including the verified accounts of Barack Obama, Benjamin Netanyahu, Bill Gates, Elon Musk, Floyd Mayweather, Jeff Bezos, Joe Biden, Kanye West, Kim Kardashian West, Michael Bloomberg, Wiz Khalifa and Warren Buffet, cryptocurrency exchanges AngeloBTC, Binance, Bitfinex, Coinbase and Gemini and companies Apple and Uber.