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Kosovar Hacker Facing Terrorism Charges Appears In Court

A Kosovar citizen accused of hacking the personal data of 1,351 U.S. military personnel and sending it to the Islamic State (IS) extremist group made his first public appearance in the United States on January 27.

Ardit Ferizi, 20, appeared in a U.S. court in Virginia to face terrorism charges after being extradited from Malaysia, where he was detained in October on a U.S. arrest warrant.

Charging documents say the Kosovar hacker broke into the computer server of a U.S. online retailer and stole the military members' identifying information.

The criminal complaint says Ferizi provided the information to IS, including the British hacker Junaid Hussain, who boasted about having the information in an August 2015 tweet titled "NEW: U.S. Military AND Government HACKED by the Islamic State Hacking Division!"

Twitter messages show that Ferizi also offered to create a computer program enabling IS to post propaganda that would "never get deleted," according to court records.

U.S. officials called Ferizi's case the "first of its kind" when his arrest was announced last year. He faces up to 35 years in prison if convicted.

Based on reporting by Reuters and BotaSot