On June 29, 2010, Darnell H. Albert-El, 53, of Richmond, pleaded guilty to one count of intentionally damaging a protected computer without authorization. Albert-El was sentenced today by Senior U.S. District Judge Robert E. Payne in the Eastern District of Virginia. Albert-El was also ordered to pay $6,700 in restitution to Transmarx.
According to court documents, in June 2008, Transmarx terminated Albert-El from his position as their information technology director. During his employment, Albert-El had administrator-level access to the Transmarx computer network, which included the company website that was hosted on a computer system located in Suwanee, Ga. In pleading guilty, Albert-El admitted that on July 25, 2008, he used a personal computer and an administrator account and password to access the computer hosting the Transmarx website. After accessing the computer, Albert-El knowingly caused the transmission of a series of commands that intentionally caused damage without authorization to the computer by deleting approximately 1,000 files related to the Transmarx website. In pleading guilty, Albert-El admitted that he caused the damage because he was angry about being fired. Albert-El’s actions caused more than $6,000 in losses to Transmarx.
This case was prosecuted by Special Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia Thomas Dukes, who is also a Senior Counsel with the U.S. Department of Justice Criminal Division’s Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section. This case was investigated by the FBI.