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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Graham Ivan Clark, who as a minor masterminded an attack on prominent Twitter accounts as part of a cryptocurrency scam last year, on Tuesday pleaded guilty to all state charges against him in exchange for a three-year sentence in a juvenile facility, the Office of the State Attorney 13th Judicial Circuit in Tampa announced.

Why it matters: Clark, now 18 years old, and his accomplices took control of popular, verified Twitter accounts — including those of Joe Biden, Barack Obama, Bill Gates and Elon Musk — and used those accounts to post a link to a bitcoin wallet, falsely claiming that those who contributed would be sent double their money back to them.

Context: Twitter temporarily disabled all verified accounts from tweeting for several hours in response to the hack, essentially crippling the social media platform that's become a key source of communication for millions of people around the world.

  • The bitcoin wallet linked to the scam received a total of 12.86 Bitcoin, which was worth approximately $117,440 on the date of the attack.

What they're saying: “He took over the accounts of famous people, but the money he stole came from regular, hard-working people," Hillsborough State Attorney Andrew Warren said in a statement.

  • "Graham Clark needs to be held accountable for that crime, and other potential scammers out there need to see the consequences," he added.

The charges Clark pleaded guilty to included one count of organized fraud, 17 counts of communications fraud, one count of fraudulent use of personal information with more than $100,000 or at least 30 victims, and 10 counts of fraudulent use of personal information.

  • He also agreed to three years of probation after his sentence.

Go deeper

What happens now that emergency orders are lifting

Expand chart
Data: National Academy for State Health Policy and various governor declarations; Chart: Sara Wise/Axios

Soon, more than half the states will have ended their formal emergency declarations for the pandemic — which could have a ripple of effects across the economy.

Why it matters: Lifting those orders will allow businesses to serve more customers, but will also end certain safety nets, including expanded food and housing assistance, as well as eviction protections.

Updated 3 hours ago - World

500 Hong Kong police officers raid pro-democracy newspaper

Chief Operations Officer Chow Tat Kuen (front 2nd R) is escorted by police from the Apple Daily newspaper offices before being put into a waiting vehicle in Hong Kong on Thursday. Photo: Anthony Wallace/AFP via Getty Images

Hong Kong's Apple Daily said 500 police officers searched the pro-democracy newspaper's offices and arrested five senior executives on Thursday.

Why it matters: The arrests of the paper's chief editor, Ryan Law, along with its chief operating officer, two other editors and the CEO of Next Digital, which operates Apple Daily, were made under China's national security law — which gives the government broad power to limit people's political freedom.

World Bank rejects El Salvador's request to help implement bitcoin

President Nayib Bukele, giving a speech in El Salvador's legislative assembly in San Salvado earlier this month, pushed for bitcoin to become legal tender. Photo: Emerson Flores/APHOTOGRAFIA/Getty Images

The World Bank has rejected the government of El Salvador's request to help the country implement Bitcoin as legal tender, Reuters first reported late Wednesday.

Why it matters: The international lender's rejection could hamper the government's goal of making the digital currency accepted across the country within three months.