The federal government of the United States filed a superseding against the founder of WikiLeaks Julian P. Assange accusing him of collaborating with the LulzSec and Anonymous group, alleged role in one of the largest compromises in the United States.
The new indictment does not add additional counts to the prior 18-count filed against Assange in May 2019. According to the charged documents, Assange and other WikiLeak recruited members agreed with hackers to commit computer intrusions to benefit WikiLeaks.
Assange also conspired with Army Intelligence Analyst Manning to crack a password hash to a classified U.S. Department of Defense computer.
In 2009, Assange told in Hacking At Random conference that WikiLeaks had obtained nonpublic documents from the Congressional Research Service by exploiting a small vulnerability in the document distribution system of the United States Congress. He also encouraged others to hack to obtain information for WikiLeaks.
In 2010, Assange also gained unauthorized access to a government computer system of a NATO country and in 2012 Assange collaborated with LulzSec and provided a list of targets to hack them and send the emails and documents, databases, and pdfs to WikiLeaks.
Assange told the LulzSec leader that the most impactful release of hacked materials would be from the CIA, NSA, or the New York Times. WikiLeaks obtained and published emails from a data breach committed against an American intelligence consulting company by an “Anonymous” and LulzSec-affiliated hacker.the DoJ said
Assange was arrested in April 2019 after Ecuador abruptly withdrew his asylum and later was sentenced to 50 weeks in U.K prison for breaching his bail conditions in 2012.
The 48-year-old is currently in prison and waiting for a pending September hearing. If convicted he faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison on each count except for the computer intrusion, for which he faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison i.e. 175 years of prison in the U.S.