Russian Cybercriminal arrested by Thai Police
Thailand police on Friday announced the arrest of a Russian cybercriminal Sergey Medvedev, who is accused by U.S. authorities for playing a role in an online cybercrime marketplace.
At the request of U.S. law enforcement agencies, Mr. Medvedev was arrested on the 2nd of February at his Bangkok apartment. According to reports from the Thai authorities, Mr. Medvedev is currently in custody awaiting extradition to the U.S. for prosecution.
Reports state that 30 CSD officers raided his apartment at the City Gate building located in the Sukhumvit 56 in Phra Khanong district. Numerous documents together with 29 electronic items were seized from the apartment by the police, while the main servers of the criminal organization were seized on Tuesday in France. Medvedev was also trading Bitcoin for illegal products online and the evidence obtained during the raid, suggests that he was in possession of over 100,000 Bitcoin which amounts to almost 100 million baht.
Thai Police Maj. Nuthapong Rattanamongkolsak, the arresting officer after the bust stated that: “Mr. Medvedev is the head of a criminal organization which has affected the global economy and public in general. He concealed his identity in cyberspace and traded in illicit items using digital currency to avoid arrest.â
A police statement stated that Medvedevâs arrest was possible because of stake-outs performances, behavioral analyses, and investigations into his online activity by officers.
Mr. Medvedev was among a criminal indictment by the U.S. Justice Department on Wednesday charging 36 people for their connection to an âInfraud Organization,â with the slogan âIn Fraud We Trustâ. It was an anonymous internet-based criminal organization founded in 2010 in Ukraine and was engaged in all sort of crimes, ranging from the sale and dissemination of stolen identities, compromised debit and credit cards, personal and private information, financial and banking information, and computer malware amongst others.
The criminal organization was also alleged to be selling illegal weapons, narcotics, illegally obtained government documents, protected wild animals, and stolen credit card PIN.
âIt was the premier one-stop shop for cybercriminals worldwide,” Deputy Assistant Attorney General David Rybicki, stated.
According to the indictment, the criminal organization boasted of almost 10,901 approved members of whom 13 were arrested on Thursday across a number of countries including Italy, Australia, France, the U.S Serbia, the UK, and Kosovo where over 4.3 million credit and debit cards and bank accounts all around the globe were traded.
The site allowed its approved members to register to buy and sell with them in 2017. A rating and feedback system was strongly maintained by these members as well as a frequent screening of the products and services of vendors in the marketplace âto ensure quality products,â the indictment stated.
Infraud has caused over $530 million in losses to banks, and legitimate businesses. Suspects arrested outside the U.S. are also awaiting extradition.
On the 31st of October last year, sealed charges were filed against these suspects, of which the seal on those court documents has now been lifted.
Medvedev according to the U.S. indictment, became the sole leader of the criminal organization after Svyatoslav Bondarenko, his co-founder disappeared in 2015. He also operated a payment system for the groupâs members and banned any criminal activity on anything belonging to individuals from Russia.
Infraud had been under the radar of U.S. officials for several years but started arresting suspects only recently, according to Thai Police Maj. Rattanamongkolsak. According to him, U.S. officials started to build a case against Infraud Organization in 2014 after an undercover agent was tasked with becoming a member of the dark web marketplace by a U.S. Homeland Security Officer.
Maj. Rattanamongkolsak, however, refused to give any additional details, saying this is an international police matter and therefore new details will be soon unveiled.