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Roommate of woman accused of hacking pleads to having guns

June 15, 2020 GMT

SEATTLE (AP) — The former roommate of a woman accused of hacking Capital One and at least 30 other organizations has pleaded guilty to illegally possessing firearms, according to federal prosecutors.

Park Quan, 67, pleaded guilty on Friday in U.S. District Court in Seattle to being a felon in possession of guns, according to U.S. Attorney Brian Moran.

Quan was sharing a home with Paige Thompson in July 2019 when FBI agents searched the home and discovered a cache of weapons. Thompson was being investigated for data theft.

During the search, Thompson, 33, was arrested and charged with accessing personal information of 106 million Capital One credit card holders. Prosecutors said Thompson, a former Amazon software engineer who goes by the online alias “erratic,” has a history of stalking and threatening to kill people and to get herself killed by police.

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Police in Mountain View, California, said she also threatened to shoot up an undisclosed company while she was living with Quan, who had a stockpile of pistols, rifles and ammunition.

Capital One said among the information obtained was 140,000 Social Security numbers and 80,000 bank account numbers. The breach was among the largest on record involving a major U.S. financial institution.

Thompson, a transgender woman, pleaded not guilty and her lawyers sought to have her released to a halfway house where she would have better access to mental health care, but the judge denied the request, saying she was a flight risk and a danger to herself and others.

Thompson’s trail was set for November but last week it was moved to Feb. 8, 2021.

During the search of Thompson’s home, they found weapons in a bedroom used by Quan. The firearms included four semi-automatic handguns, six semi-automatic rifles, two of them assault rifles, and two additional rifles.

They also seized a variety of ammunition, high-capacity magazines, flare launchers, some containers of explosive powder, and two bump stocks, which Quan “claimed to have purchased before the devices were outlawed,” prosecutors said.

Quan was convicted in 1983 of being a felon in possession of explosives and was convicted in 1991 in Texas of having an unregistered machine gun. He also has a military court-martial conviction for soliciting the theft of military weapons.

Those convictions mean he can’t legally have firearms.

Prosecutors and defense attorneys plan to recommend a four-year prison sentenced when Quan is sentenced on Sept. 8, 2020.