Guccifer, Hacker Tied to Hillary Clinton Email Scandal, Missing or Dead-Fiction!
Summary of eRumor:
Romanian hacker Marcel Lehel Lazar (aka Guccifer), who is famous for claiming that he hacked Hillary Clinton’s private email server, went missing or was found dead in his jail cell.
Claims that Marcel Lehel Lazar, or “Guccifer,” went missing just before the FBI interviewed Hillary Clinton about her use of a private email server don’t check out.
Guccifer has been held in an Alexandria, Virginia, jail cell since pleading guilty to hacking charges in May. In a short statement released on July 6, the Alexandria Sheriff’s Department shot down rumors that Guccifer was missing or had been found dead in his cell:
Marcel Lehel Lazar, a federal inmate also known as Guccifer, is at the William G. Truesdale Adult Detention Center in Alexandria, Va. He is alive and has never been missing from this facility.
Guccifer pleaded guilty to charges of identity theft and unauthorized access to protected computers for breaking into the email and social media accounts of approximately 100 Americans, including former presidents George W. Bush and George H.W. Bush, as well as former Secretary of State Colin Powell.
When it comes to Hillary Clinton, Guccifer claimed that he had successfully hacked into her private email server, but he didn’t provide any documents or proof to back up that claim. He did, however, hack into the email account of Sidney Blumenthal, a former advisor to Clinton, NBC News reports:
He also obtained e-mails from Sidney Blumenthal, a former adviser to Hillary Clinton. Their disclosure online revealed that she had a private e-mail address, when eventually led the FBI to investigate whether classified information was mishandled.
Lazar claimed he succeeded in hacking into her private e-mail server and downloading some of the contents. “It was like an open orchid on the Internet. There were hundreds of folders,” he told NBC News correspondent Cynthia McFadden before he was extradited to the U.S.
But Lazar refused to show any of the material he said he found on the Clinton server, and federal investigators said they have found no evidence to back up his claim.
Rumors that Guccifer had been found dead or had gone missing, and that it was somehow related to Hillary Clinton’s private email server case, started to spread after the FBI interviewed Clinton on July 2.
The rumor didn’t stop after FBI Director James Comey announced that the bureau wouldn’t recommend criminal charges against Clinton on July 5.
The website What Does It Mean reported that Guccifer had gone missing from jail and that his whereabouts were unknown on July 2, the day the FBI interviewed Clinton:
According to this report, Guccifer is at the center of what is turning into one of America’s greatest political scandals for his hacking into the private email server of former Secretary of State (and current US presidential candidate) Hillary Clinton that, in turn, allowed the SVR to gain access to them too—and which recently an unnamed US State Department official admitted to the Washington Times both China and Israel now have possession of too.
Then, on July 5, the Christian Times Newspaper (not to be confused with the reputable Christian Times) picked up the hoax about Guccifer with a story appearing under the headline, “Romanian Hacker with Access to Clinton Emails Found Dead in Jail Cell.”
Given the website’s resemblance to the reputable Christian Times publication, many people were duped into believing that the Christian Times Newspaper story was true. However, the website has become know for publishing false “click bait” articles, and this appears to be another one of them.
Reports that Guccifer has been found dead or has gone missing are false, and claims that Guccifer is “at the center” of the Clinton email server scandal are unproven since his claims haven’t been verified by investigators.
This rumor fits into a larger narrative that has been advanced about Clinton foes being found dead or going missing under suspicious circumstances.
See our “Clinton Body Count” story here for a list of claims about that. Another investigation into rumors that John Ashe, a former United Nations General Assembly president, was found dead days before he was set to testify Clinton, can be read here.