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Russian Cybercriminal Extradited to US Pleads Guilty


A Russian man's guilty plea has been secured by the US prosecutors. Peter Levashov, the Russian, is accused for commandeering the network of 1 lakh or more computers that were breached. This case brings in another major success for the second time in a week, in the field of international hacking.


The deal cut by the prosecutors suggests that they may consider Levashov a valuable guide to the broader cybercrime world. For almost the next one year, Levashov is not scheduled for the sentencing. This kind of delay often suggests that a detainee is most probably cooperating with the prosecutors for gaining a lighter sentence. Vadim Glozman, Levashov's attorney, however said in a phone interview, that his client Levashov is not cooperating. The original date for sentencing was in the month of November, but Glozman has requested for a postponement as the defense is "still in dispute with the government regarding several aspects of the sentencing, including restitution," he said.


Peter Yuryevich Levashov, aged 38, used Kelihos botnet - a worldwide network of thousands of computers that are infected - for distributing bulk spam emails, for harvesting the login credentials, and for installing ransomware along with other malicious software, said U.S. Justice Department as posted on September 13, 2018, by reuters.com.


The investigators have linked Levashov, who is also known by the names Peter Severa and Pyotr Levashov, with many powerful botnets series, or the networks hijacked computers that are capable of sending billions of emails that are spam. As per the Federal officials, the botnets - which also includes the one that has infected around 50,000 computers - were controlled by Levashov for harvesting the logins, passwords and email address from the infected computers.


In April 2017, Levashov has been arrested in Spain and earlier this year was extradited from there. In February, announcement was made by the Justice Department that Levashov was extradited to United States. He was accused for stealing personal information as well as passwords of users in an attempt to control computers remotely. He was pleaded guilty at Connecticut's Hartford city to four counts that are related to the allegations of distribution of spam emails that were advertising fake drugs, pump-and-dump stock schemes and various other frauds. He was pleaded guilty of causing deliberate damage to the computer that was protected, of conspiracy, of wire fraud and for aggravating the identity theft, said the department.


Glozman said that Levashov had done the plea deal, so that he can go back to his family members as early as possible. He further added that the defense is thinking of bringing Levashov's family members as well as "some character witnesses" to the sentencing.

» SPAMfighter News - 9/18/2018

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