An Atlanta-based defense contractor has been arrested in connection with the sabotaging of an Army Reserve computer program in 2014.
Mittesh Das was indicted earlier this month on one count of intentionally causing damage to a protected computer, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office for North Carolina's Eastern District.
Das appeared in federal court in Georgia on Wednesday, but the case is centered in eastern North Carolina because Army Reserve Command is headquartered at Fort Bragg.
A North Carolina-based grand jury agreed to indict Das on April 5. He was arrested on Wednesday, according to court records.
According to reports, Army Reserve soldiers had to wait an average of 17 extra days to receive pay in late 2014 following the damage Das allegedly caused.
He's accused of transmitting malicious code to intentionally damage the computer program the Reserve uses to process pay and keep track of transfers, awards and promotions.
Initially, Army Reserve officials blamed the delay on a computer glitch. But officials with Army Criminal Investigation Command opened an investigation that led to Das's arrest.
"As charged, Mr. Das allegedly exploited his position as a cleared defense contractor to sabotage the U.S. Army Reserve's personnel system and disrupt pay to our nation's soldiers," said Daniel Andrews, director of the Army CID's Computer Crime Investigative Unit. "Cybercrime and insider threats present significant challenges to national security and military operations, and we will continue to root our those responsible and help bring violators to justice."
If convicted, Das could be punished by up to 10 years in prison, a fine of up to $250,000 and three years of supervised release.