Fact check: Photos show Idaho teenager who killed his father

·3 min read

The claim: Photos show an 11-year-old boy arrested for hacking a Swiss bank and transferring $75 billion into his father's bank account

In the days before Father's Day, social media users shared a series of photos that claims to show a teenage boy who stole billions for his father.

A June 13 Facebook post called the boy “The Greatest Son of All Time.”

“My son needs to do better," wrote another Facebook user who shared the post.

The post shows three images of a young boy wearing a yellow jumpsuit and handcuffs in a courtroom. “At 11, he hacked the computer system of a Swiss bank and transferred $75 billion to his father’s account,” text above the images reads.

But the real story behind the images is a far cry from an act of love.

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The teenage boy in the images did not hack into a Swiss bank or steal billions. He was found guilty of killing his father in 2009.

USA TODAY reached out to several accounts that shared the post for comment. Facebook user Caidian Johnson told USA TODAY the story was "false" but did not remove his post.

Photos are from a manslaughter trial

The boy in the images is Zachary Neagle. He served five years in prison for killing his father in 2009, when he was 14 years old.

Using a reverse image search, USA TODAY found the three photos used in the Facebook post are all available from the Associated Press. Each photo description identifies Neagle. Idaho Press-Tribune photographer Mike Vogt took the photos at Neagle’s May 20, 2009, court appearance.

Neagle pleaded guilty in 2010 to voluntary manslaughter in the shooting death of his father. During his trial, Neagle argued he killed his father to protect his other siblings after years of sexual abuse.

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His case, and the prosecutor's controversial choice to charge him as an adult, generated national coverage. Neagle was released on probation in 2014.

Neagle's case did not involve any charges related to hacking a Swiss bank and stealing money. In October, the Agence France-Presse debunked similar claims that a social media post showed a 14-year-old boy who stole money for his father.

USA TODAY found no evidence any such hacking theft actually took place, involving this boy or any other.

Our rating: False

The claim that photos show an 11-year-old boy was arrested for hacking a Swiss bank and transferring $75 billion into his father's bank account is FALSE, because it is not supported by our research. The photos in the Facebook post show a boy from Idaho who pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter in the shooting death of his father in 2009. The case did not involve hacking or stealing money.

Our fact check sources:

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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Fact check: Photos show Idaho teenager who killed his father

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