A New York City-based private investigator has pled guilty to one charge of conspiracy to commit computer hacking, which carries a maximum sentence of five years.
Eric Saldarriaga allegedly hired hackers to access the email accounts of various victims, a Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) press release states. Saldarriaga allegedly had the hackers hand over login credentials, so he could access victims’ accounts and review their communications.
Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said in the release: “Eric Saldarriaga crossed the line as a private investigator by hiring hackers to unlawfully and secretly access over 60 e-mail accounts, including accounts belonging to people he was investigating.”
Saldarriaga’s victims allegedly included both people in whom his clients were interested as well as individuals in whom he had a personal interest.