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  1. ITV Report

UFO hacker will not be tried in Britain for US crimes

Gary McKinnon Photo: John Stillwell/PA Archive/Press Association Images

A British hacker whose extradition to face charges of accessing nearly 100 U.S. government computers in a quest for UFOs was halted on grounds he might harm himself will not be tried in Britain.

Gary McKinnon, 46, who suffers from Asperger's Syndrome, has admitted hacking into Pentagon and NASA computers under the pseudonym "Solo", saying he was looking for evidence of flying saucers and other extraterrestrial activity.

ITV News' Neil Connery reports:

He has been fighting extradition since police arrested him in 2005. Home Secretary Theresa May blocked his extradition in October because of the high risk he could kill himself. She referred the matter to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) to rule if he should be tried at home.

The CPS said on Friday the chances of a conviction were "not high", and cited logistical difficulties in pursuing a case in England and Wales such as bringing over witnesses and evidence from the United States.

"The prospects of a conviction against Mr McKinnon which reflects the full extent of his alleged criminality are not high," the CPS said in a statement.

He had faced up to 60 years in a U.S. jail if found guilty of gaining unauthorised access to 97 U.S. government computers over a decade ago, and allegedly causing $700,000 damage to U.S. military systems.