Video: Grounding Captain Midnight

High-tech, Holmesian detective work unmasks a satellite intruder

The attack was swift and startling, the getaway apparently clean. Shortly after midnight one morning last April, a mysterious electronic intruder interrupted a movie on HBO with a transmission of his own. GOOD EVENING HBO FROM CAPTAIN MIDNIGHT, read the message on the screen. $12.95/MONTH? NO WAY! (SHOWTIME/MOVIE CHANNEL BEWARE!). The complaint was directed at cable services that scramble their satellite-beamed signals so owners of home dishes can see programs only by buying a decoder and paying a monthly fee. The daring prank captured the nation's fancy but set in motion a high-tech manhunt. Last week, after a three-month investigation, Captain...

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