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Dutch computer hacker faces extradition to the U.S.

Accused of links with Russian ‘mafiya’

Tags: Excerpts from the Windmill

RIJSWIJK, the Netherlands - A Dutch criminal arrested recently on suspicion of large-scale hacking of computers worldwide, could face extradition to the United States. Ferry C. (27) and two accomplices also are accused of extortion of two U.S. companies.

The arrest of the three men followed an extensive investigation by the FBI. The lawyer of one of the men wants a speedy trial in the Netherlands. This possibly could avoid an extradition request by the U.S. To stall such proceedings, the lawyer also has instructed his client to use his right to remain silent. The accused however already had admitted to belong to a ‘circle of hackers.’

The men are accused of spreading spam and viruses on a massive scale, imbedding so-called ‘trojans’ in thousands of computers, thus enabling the criminals to hack passwords and other encryptions used to protect internet bank accounts and other financial information. According to the FBI, such information was sold to middlemen in Eastern Europe with strong ties to the Russian ‘mafiya.’

The extortion was a result of a disagreement between the hackers and an internet company on whose behalf the men sent large quantities of so-called spam. When no payment for these services was made, the Dutch hackers threatened to disrupt the company’s services. The U.S. firms instead contacted the FBI.