According to the Australian Federal Police (AFP), a 17-year-old appeared in Parramatta Children's Court today to face several charges related to hacking (h/t SC Magazine).

The unidentified juvenile "is suspected to be a member of the online issue motivated group 'Anonymous' and allegedly committed serious offenses on their behalf," according to a police statement.

A search warrant was executed at the 17-year-old's home in November of last year, and the following charges were filed:

  • Six counts of unauthorized modification of data to cause impairment, which carries a maximum penalty of 10 years imprisonment
  • One count of unauthorized access with intent to commit a serious offence, which carries a maximum penalty of 10 years imprisonment
  • One count of possession of data with intent to commit a computer offence, which carries a maximum penalty of 3 years imprisonment
  • 12 counts of unauthorized access to restricted data, which carries a maximum penalty of 2 years imprisonment

If my math is correct (and I hope it isn't), that's a total of up to 97 years in prison.

"Protesting through computer instrusions and Web site defacements is not an appropriate method to raise public awareness about any issue," Commander Glen McEwen, the AFP's manager of cybercrime operations, said in a statement. "The AFP investigates various types of cybercrime and will continue to take a strong stance against these perpetrators."

The accused will next appear in court on May 17, 2013.