In the 'early days' when Rui Pinto was treated as a criminal for blowing the whistle on corruption

Football Leaks ‘hacker’ appeals extradition to Portugal from Budapest

Rui Pinto, the young computer geek and ‘whistleblower’ often referred to as the ‘Football Leaks hacker’, heard on Wednesday that he is to be extradited to Portugal to face accusations of illegal access into football club IT systems.

It’s a development Pinto has been fighting against since his arrest in Hungary in January (click here).

The 30-year-old told judges in Budapest this morning that being returned to Portugal was “a matter of life and death”.

Talking to journalists outside the courtroom today, Pinto conceded that he was indeed wary of ‘judicial partiality’ in Portugal.

The result is that this morning’s decision is now the subject of an appeal which leaves the young man free for the time being from arrest by Portuguese authorities.

Pinto has been living in Budapest since 2015. He claims that everything he has done has been in the public interest, designed to highlight the ‘criminality’ which he believes lives at the heart of European football.

In interviews in the past he has said there are “various cases” that he has been involved in exposing, and as a result, he “cannot trust authorities in Portugal”.

Pinto is accused of six crimes, including two of illegitimate access, two of violation of secrets, one of offence against a collective of people, and another of attempted extortion.

The young man has told journalists: “I have never received any monetary value for what I have done”.

natasha.donn@algarveresident.com