Global Cyberfraud Gang's 'Co-Founder' Arrested in Thailand
A Russian man accused of co-running a global cybercrime network shuttered in a US-led crackdown this week has been arrested in Bangkok and will face extradition, Thai police said Friday.
Sergey Medvedev, 31, is accused of co-founding the "Infraud Organization," an online network that stole and sold credit card and other personal identity data, causing $530 million in losses, according to US authorities.
On Wednesday the US Department of Justice indicted 36 people of racketeering conspiracy and other crimes for their roles in the crime syndicate.
Thirteen defendants hailing from around the globe were arrested in the US and six other countries, including Australia, the UK, France, Italy, Kosovo and Serbia.
Medvedev was not listed as one of the 36 suspects charged this week but was described in the indictment as co-administrator of the network with its Ukraine founder Svyatoslav Bondarenko, who remains at large.
Masked cops armed with automatic weapons swooped on his Bangkok condo on February 2, making the arrest before US justice officials indicted other alleged members of the ring.
"(Medvedev) is now being detained at Bangkok Remand Prison waiting for US authorities to take him for prosecution in the US," said Nuthapon Rattanamongkolsak, a Thai officer from the Crime Suppression Division.
The US Embassy in Bangkok declined to comment.
The Russian national frequently travelled in and out of Thailand over the past six years on tourist visas, the officer said.
"He has no real job here and spent his life as any other tourist," Nuthapon told AFP, adding that he expected authorities to extradite Medvedev within the month.
Infraud was founded in Ukraine in 2010 and touted itself with the slogan "In Fraud We Trust."
It became the "premier destination" on the web for purchasing goods with counterfeit or stolen credit card information, according to US authorities.
The organisation, which had 10,901 approved "members" by 2017, also provided an "escrow" service for transactions in crypto-currencies including Bitcoin, the indictment said.
Mevedev is not the first alleged cybercriminal to have used Thailand as a base.
Last year Thai police arrested a 26-year-old Canadian who was wanted by the US for running AlphaBay, at the time the world's largest dark web marketplace for drugs and other contraband.
The suspect, Alexandre Cazes, died in Thai police custody before he could be extradited.
Officers said the computer programmer hanged himself with a towel in his detention cell in Bangkok.