Gary Bowser, a 52-year-old Canadian citizen and leader of the hacker group Team Xecuter (not to be confused with Doug Bowser, current president of Nintendo of America) has just been sentenced by a United States court to 40 months in prison for the sale of modified chips for consoles, as well as the distribution of other hacking tools for the Nintendo Switch and other company consoles.
Arrested in 2020 by the FBI, prior to today’s sentencing announcement, Bowser faced up to 10 years in prison. However, as detailed in the judgment released today, thanks to interim settlements over the past year, in which the hacker agreed to pay Nintendo up to $10 million to settle a civil privacy lawsuit and another $4.5 million dollars in restitution to Nintendo of America (the segment of the company most affected), the sentence has been significantly reduced.
Some facts to which is added the role of Bowser himself, who despite having been branded as the leader of this group, was currently limited exclusively to «managing the websites that communicated with customers who offered devices for sale«. And it is that currently the Team Xecuter is made up of web designers, developers, marketing personnel and others, for a total of more than a dozen employees.
However, according to estimates by the United States Department of Justice, video game publishers would have lost more than 65 million dollars in thanks due to the actions of Team Xecuter. In fact, in addition to hacks for the Nintendo Switch, this group is credited with other hacking systems for the Nintendo 3DS or the NES Classic Edition, and even other classic consoles like Sony’s PlayStation Classic and Microsoft’s Xbox.
So, Nintendo’s relentless fight against piracy continues, with Homeland Security and FBI investigators still working to apprehend Bowser’s accomplices.