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Man Who Took Over County Computers, Altered Inmate's Release Date Pleads Guilty

ANN ARBOR (WWJ/AP) - A 27-year-old man who was able to take over the Washtenaw County computer system with malware and other tricks has pleaded guilty in federal court.

Prosecutors say Konrads Voits executed a classic phishing scheme, using both email and phone calls to county employees to gain access and control of the computer network. Upon gaining access, Voits took the information of many former and present county employees -- while also altering jail records, in an attempt to free one inmate early. Jail employees noticed the edit and prevented any early release.

Washtenaw County, which employs more than 1,600 workers, spent more than $230,000 to fix the breach.

Voits, who lives in Ypsilanti Township, pleaded guilty Friday to damaging a protected computer, a federal crime. He could face seven years or more in prison, plus a $250,000 fine, when sentenched on April 5. He's in jail without bond.

"Computer hackers should realize that unlawfully entering another's computer will result in a felony conviction and a prison sentence," Acting United States Attorney Daniel Lemisch said in a statement.

The FBI first encountered Voits in 2015 when he reported a false bomb threat.

© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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