Israeli man jailed for stealing Madonna’s songs

JERUSALEM: An aspiring singer who auditioned for Israel’s top TV song competition was sentenced on July 9 to 14 months in prison after he was convicted of stealing and selling unreleased songs by international pop star Madonna.

Adi Lederman was arrested earlier this year and after confessing, reached a plea deal on charges that he hacked into the computers of people linked to Madonna and then stole and sold her songs.

Lederman, a Tel Aviv resident in his late 30s, was also fined 15,000 shekels, or about $3,900.

The court ruled that the “appropriate” sentence should serve as a deterrent for future hacking incidents. Songs from Madonna’s latest album Rebel Heart were leaked online late last year. At the time, she urged her fans not to listen to the stolen copies that had surfaced, writing on Instagram, “I have been violated as a human and an artiste.”

She later released six songs, calling it an “early Christmas gift” for fans.

Madonna has long claimed a special bond with Israel. The investigation into Lederman’s activities began after Madonna’s representative in Israel lodged a complaint. The investigation was coordinated with the FBI.