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A former sysadmin faces six-to-12 years behind bars after admitting using his IT skills to conduct a series of burglaries, computer intrusions, and identity thefts in San Jose, California.

Andrew Madrid, 34, pleaded guilty to a string of computer hacking, second degree burglary, and id theft offences last Friday. He also admitted two drug dealing offences, involving possession with intent to supply amphetamines. Madrid was out on bail for the drug offences at the time of his March 2008 arrest, the The Mercury News reports.

He posed as a security guard and IT worker to gain access to office premises and steal IT kit, which he subsequently resold. In some cases, Madrid placed counterfeit barcodes on expensive kit in an attempt to buy it at knock-off prices. The crimes were carried out between September 2006 and March 2008, when he arrested and slung into detention.

One victim was Madrid's former employer in Sunnyvale, California. He reportedly trashed data on its systems before cheekily offering to fix the problem he created. His activities also ran to planting spyware on systems.

Madrid faces a sentencing hearing on 22 January before Judge Douglas Southard.

A statement on the case by the San Clara District Attorney's office can be found here. ®

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