The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York has announced the indictment of six suspects for their participation in a $45 million international ATM cyber heist operation.
Five of the suspects were arrested early this week on charges they are members of a global cybercrime organization that stole MasterCard branded debit-card information, acting as “cashers” and withdrawing approximately $2.8 million from more than 140 ATMs different in New York City. A sixth suspect remains at large.
The defendants are accused of hacking into the systems of financial institutions to steal prepaid debit card data, then making fraudulent ATM withdrawals. Photographic evidence seized by authorities reveal that the defendants sent the majority of the stolen funds to the organization’s leaders in luggage transported to Florida by bus for delivery.
“As alleged, just a few months ago, after exploiting cyber-weaknesses in the financial system to steal millions from ATMs, these defendants were packing bags to the brim with stolen cash, destined for the cybercriminal organizers of these attacks,” stated United States Attorney Lynch. “Today, we have sent them packing once again – but this time, to jail. We will not relent until all those responsible for these financially devastating cybercrimes are brought to justice.”
The defendants face up to 7.5 years in prison on the charge of access device fraud conspiracy and a fine of up to $250,000.
“This case is another example of the ability of cybercriminals to inflict significant damage to world financial systems,” said Secret Service Special Agent in Charge Hughes. “This investigation and the resulting indictments should serve as a reminder to cybercriminals that law enforcement will continue to utilize cutting-edge investigative techniques, traditional tactics and hard work to thwart complex transnational cybercriminal activity.”
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