An Estonian Sentenced Because of Ransomware Conspiracy

The US Department of Justice announced that an Estonian man – Maksim Berezan, 37 – was sentenced to 66 months in prison because of ransomware conspiracy. He was apprehended in Latvia and extradited to the United States.

According to the court documents, Berezan had participated in at least 13 ransomware attacks, seven of which were against U.S. victims, and that approximately $11 million in ransom payments flowed into cryptocurrency wallets that he controlled. Berezan used his ill-gotten gains to purchase two Porsches, a Ducati motorcycle, and an assortment of jewelry.

While we have long been in the business of protecting money, from the earliest days of coins and paper, to plastic, and today’s more accessible and commonplace digital currencies, we also remain in parallel footprint to the evolution of criminal behavior into cyberspace,” said Matthew Stohler, special agent at the US Secret Service.

Ransomware thieves are not safe in any dark corner of the internet in which they may think they can hide from our highly trained investigators and law enforcement partners worldwide. Together with our critical partners we are dedicated to protecting the public and securing every iteration of our money and every part of our national financial infrastructure.

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