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France

Journalist’s father dies following harassment by Franco-Israeli hacker

media The site of the pro-Palestinian New Anti-capitalist Party hacked by Ulcan, aka Grégory Chelli Screengrab

A Franco-Israeli hacker has threatened to sue a website over articles linking him to the death of the father of one of its journalists. Grégory Chelli, alias Ulcan, phoned Rue89 reporter Benoît Le Corre to mock him after hearing the news of his father’s death from the heart attack.

On Wednesday Rue89’s founder, Pierre Haski, published an article reporting the death of
Le Corre’s father
, who had been in an artifical coma since suffering a heart attack following prank calls from Chelli.

Dossier: Gaza 2009

After Rue89 published a report by Le Corre on Chelli’s hacking of pro-Palestinian sites during Israel’s Gaza offensive this year, the hacker, who lives in Israel and runs a website called ViolVocal (VocalRape), called the journalist’s father and told him that his son had died.

Forty-eight hours later police arrived at the father’s home at 4.00am because Chelli had told them that the man had killed his wife and son.

Three days after that Le Corre’s father had a heart attack, which left him in hospital in an artificial come until his death on Tuesday.

Doctors had previously warned him that he was at high risk of a heart attack but, Haski wrote on Wednesday, it was “difficult not to make a connection with the stress suffered in the days before his heart attack”.

“We can’t establish a clear correlation between the stress and the heart attack but you’d be inclined to say that it is not unrelated,” a doctor told Rue89.

Shortly after the death was announced, Chelli sneered at Le Corre on ViolVocal and then phoned him to offer his “condescendence” – subsequently correcting his words to “condolences” – and suggesting that the pair have a boxing match to “make lots of money”.

In a tweet he declared that he felt “in no way responsible”, adding “I want to sue for libel”.

Apart from hacking pro-Palestinian website, Chelli broadcast a recording of a police officer he had tricked into reading a file on Haski over the phone after Rue89’s first story on him.

He has also hacked the site of anti-Semitic comedian Dieudonné, harassed the a female police officer who denounced racism and homophobia in the police force and taken part in the sacking of a pro-Palestinian bookshop.

Several cases have been filed against the hacker and an investigation has been opened in Paris but the Israeli authorities have so far failed to take any action.

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