Chris Hutcheson (L) and his two sons pleaded guilty to conspiracy to raid Gordon Ramsay’s emails
Chris Hutcheson, 68, and his two sons pleaded guilty to conspiracy to raid Ramsay’s emails.
His daughter Orlanda Butland, 45, who faced the same charge, walked free from the Old Bailey after Crown lawyers offered no evidence against her today.
Hutcheson and his sons Adam, 46, and Chris, 37, were released on unconditional bail ahead of a sentencing hearing on June 2.
The maximum custodialThe maximum sentence is two months in prison
Judge Gerald Gordon said: “All options are open. It is clear, realistically, the judge is going to be considering only one other option to an immediate custodial sentence and it would be a suspended sentence.” The maximum sentence is two months in prison.
The charges stem from a legal battle between the star of Hell’s Kitchen and Hutcheson in 2010 and 2011.
Father-of-four Ramsay, 50, who married Hutcheson’s daughter Tana, 42, in 1996, had once been close to his father-in-law and employed him as his chief executive.
But the two men fell out and Hutcheson was removed as a director and shareholder of Gordon Ramsay Holdings Ltd in 2010.
Hutcheson’s daughter Orlanda Butland, 45, who faced the same charge, walked free today
At an earlier hearing, Dan Suter, prosecuting, said: “At the time Chris Hutcheson senior had been dismissed by GRHL, he had previously held a senior position with GRHL.
"The prosecution will say, as a result of that dismissal he was motivated to access, unlawfully, the computer system.”
Get Quotes on Home Insurance
A Scotland Yard expert later discovered almost 2,000 GRHL emails had been hacked.
Hutcheson and his son Adam used their Google Mail accounts to illegally download the messages, the court heard.
Detectives discovered a 10-page document sent between the pair in which they discussed how to “crack codes” and “access passwords.”
An expert hired by Ramsay, who is worth around £100million, had discovered the restaurant tycoon’s computer system had been hacked, the court heard. Police were alerted and the case was passed to the Yard’s Operation Tuleta squad.
Adam Hutcheson pleaded guilty to conspiracy to raid Ramsay’s emails
Hutcheson senior, of Southfields, south London, his son Adam, of Wrotham Heath, Kent, and son Chris, of Welwyn Garden City, Herts, admitted conspiracy to unlawfully access a computer between October 23, 2010, and March 31, 2011.
Robert O’Sullivan, QC, prosecuting, told Judge Gordon: “The Crown has been informed of these pleas in advance this morning and the pleas are acceptable to the prosecution. The Crown has concluded in light of the guilty pleas entered by the first three defendants, the public interest does not require a trial of the fourth defendant.”
Judge Gordon recorded a not guilty verdict for Butland, also of Southfields.
As the three hackers left court, it emerged Hutcheson senior is due to go into hospital later this month for a hip replacement operation.