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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of New Hampshire

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, May 25, 2021

Hooksett Man Sentenced to Over a Year in Prison for Computer Hacking Offenses

            CONCORD - Wayne Kenney, 31, of Hooksett, was sentenced to 12 months and one day in federal prison for unauthorized access to a computer and damage to protected computers, Acting United States Attorney John J. Farley announced today.

             According to court documents and statements made in court, in early 2015, Kenney was arrested by a police officer with the Auburn Police Department (hereafter referred to as “John Doe 1” to protect his identity) for possession of heroin, for which he received a suspended sentence and was required to attend drug counseling sessions at the Farnum Center, an addiction treatment center located in Manchester. Thereafter, Kenney engaged in a retributive course of action that involved hacking into various computers of the Auburn Police Department, the Town Offices of Auburn, and the Farnum Center.

            From February 2015 through July 2015, Kenney hacked into Auburn Police Department and Town of Auburn computers and deployed malicious “keylogging” software that he created, and stole employees’ log-in credentials.  He then hacked into, deleted files from, and defaced employees’ online accounts. In addition, Kenney deployed malicious software that caused pop up messages to appear that stated “I pray for the death of [John Doe 1].” 

            Also according to court documents, on or about July 1, 2015, Kenney hacked into the website for the Farnum Center and took control of the site.  He disabled a link that would have provided website visitors access to information about alcohol and drug treatment assistance. He also changed their 24-hour emergency drug hotline phone number so that anyone calling for help would be re-routed to a number associated with adult entertainment services and would be unable to reach the Farnum Center’s emergency services.

            Kenney previously pleaded guilty on November 18, 2021.

            “The defendant’s reprehensible actions caused significant harm to entities that seek to help the public,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Farley.  “By disabling access to drug and alcohol treatment information, the defendant cruelly impeded innocent people from getting help for their substance abuse problems.  His actions also harmed innocent public servants in Auburn.  To protect the community from such crimes, we work closely with the FBI to identify and prosecute computer hackers.”

           “The facts of this case speak for themselves. You can’t hide in the shadows of the internet and hack into computers and impede others from accessing emergency substance abuse treatment services and get away with it,” said Joseph R. Bonavolonta, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Boston Division. “Today’s sentence holds Wayne Kenney accountable for his vindictive crimes and should serve as a warning to others that the FBI will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to thoroughly investigate all cyber intrusions and hold the criminals behind them accountable.”

            This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.  The case was prosecuted by Senior Trial Attorney Mona Sedky of the Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division and Assistant U.S. Attorney Georgiana L. MacDonald of the District of New Hampshire.  Former Assistant U.S. Attorney Arnold H. Huftalen previously worked on this matter.

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Topic(s): 
Cyber Crime
Component(s): 
Press Release Number: 
21-108
Updated May 25, 2021