Orange County tutor accused of hacking arrested at LAX

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A former Orange County tutor has been charged for illegally changing the grades of several students after he was arrested at LAX.

A former Orange County tutor has been charged for illegally changing the grades of several students after he was arrested at LAX Monday afternoon.

Timothy Lai, 29, has been charged with one count of second-degree commercial burglary and four felony counts of computer access and fraud for allegedly giving Corona del Mar High School students a hacking device and showing them how to use it.

Newport Beach police were tipped that Lai was returning to the United States and were waiting with handcuffs at the airport.

Prosecutors contend that between April 1, 2013, and June 14, 2013, Lai broke into the school and used keylogging devices to record the keystrokes from computers, which allowed him to obtain passwords and access the school computer system. He changed the grades of three students from two different teachers, prosecutors allege. A teacher later discovered the changes and contacted school administrators.

In December, Corona del Mar High School said some students hacked the school's computer system in order to change grades and access tests. Lai disappeared in December.

In the wake of the scandal, 11 students who were also allegedly involved in hacking the system were expelled from the school.

If convicted, Lai faces more than five years in jail. He is scheduled to make his first court appearance on Wednesday in Santa Ana.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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