Singaporean hacker ‘The Messiah’ gets 56 months jail

James Raj, a Singaporean, committed these offences between March and November 2013, and was living in Kuala Lumpur at the time of his arrest on November 4, 2013. — Today pic
James Raj, a Singaporean, committed these offences between March and November 2013, and was living in Kuala Lumpur at the time of his arrest on November 4, 2013. — Today pic

SINGAPORE, Jan 30 — Hacker James Raj Arokiasamy, who uses the pseudonym “The Messiah”, was sentenced to 56 months in prison today for computer misuse and drug consumption.

James Raj had pleaded guilty to 39 of the 161 charges made against him for hacking into the web servers of Fuji Xerox, Standard Chartered Bank, pop singer Sun Ho who is wife of City Harvest Church founder Kong Hee, as well as some government agencies. Out of the 161 charges, 39 charges for computer misuse and one charge for drug consumption were proceeded with, while the other charges were taken into consideration for sentencing.

On October 2013, James Raj had also posted an online video threatening that the infamous hacker group Anonymous, which he claimed to be part of, would “go to war” with the Singapore Government. While reading out the sentence today, Deputy Chief District Judge Jennifer Marie said that the “chilling effect” of the video which was played in court during the trial, had “shed light on the person behind these acts — the audacious bravado of James Raj”.

James Raj, a Singaporean, committed these offences between March and November 2013, and was living in Kuala Lumpur at the time of his arrest on November 4, 2013. He was arrested by the Malaysian police and was sent back to Singapore where he has been in remand till today.

The tall and thin 36-year-old remained calm as Judge Marie read out the sentence to him. He had represented himself in court today, having earlier discharged his lawyer M Ravi.

Judge Marie said that the sentence “cannot be considered as crushing and the term of imprisonment adequately befits the gravity of the offences”. She added that there was a need to send a strong signal to James Raj as well as “like-minded persons that they should banish the thought of pursuing such criminal conduct”.

James Raj’s sentence will take effect from the date of his arrest on November 4, 2013. — Today

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