System administrator steals almost 20,000 pieces of computer gear

Now this is some serious computer theft. We're talking 19,709 pieces of stolen computer equipment from the US Naval Research Laboratory in Washington, DC. The theft included everything from PCs and printer toner to hard drives, software and other office equipment amounting to over $120,000 according to court documents and published reports.

The systems administrator, Victor Papagno plead guilty in federal court today to stealing the items in a period between 1997 and 2007 to benefit Papagno and his friends, reports said.  

He took so much stuff that he stored some of it in neighbors' houses, according to WTOP.com a local news outlet. That report indicated that no secret technological information had been taken but that private information from 14 employees and contractors who worked at the laboratory from 1998 to 2002 had been found on CDs or zip drives, and those people were contacted, the agency said.

Sentencing is set for December when Papagno could face up to two years in jail for the thefts.

The US Naval Research Laboratory calls itself the Navy's corporate laboratory and conducts all manner of scientific research.

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