MOSCOW, December 19 (RAPSI) – Two Russian nationals who pleaded guilty to participating in a computer hacking scheme that left more than 160 million credit card numbers compromised will face sentencing in the U.S. District Court of New Jersey in June 2017.
Sentence for Dmitriy Smilianets is expected to be announced on June 15, while sentence for Vladimir Drinkman is expected to be declared on June 16.
According to the prosecutors, Russians Vladimir Drinkman, Alexander Kalinin, Roman Kotov and Dmitriy Smilianets, and Ukrainian Mikhail Rytikov, together stole and resold credit and debit cards over a period of seven years, causing more than $300 million in losses. Their actions have been described as "the largest hacking scheme ever prosecuted in the United States." Several large corporations were listed as victims: 7-Eleven, the Hannaford Brothers supermarket chain, Visa, Dow Jones and Jet Blue, among others.
The five men were charged in absentia by the District of New Jersey federal court in July 2013. U.S. citizen Albert Gonzalez was another defendant in this case. In March 2010, He was sentenced to 20 years in prison.
Smilianets was arrested along with Drinkman in the Netherlands in June 2012 and was extradited in September of that year. Initially he pleaded not guilty but later admitted his guilt in conspiracy to fraud affecting a financial institution.
A Dutch court ruled on January 27, 2015 that Drinkman is to be sent to the United States to stand trial. Drinkman initially appealed the ruling but later faced the U.S. court in February 2015. He admitted his guilt in conspiracy to get unauthorized access to a computer and conspiracy to fraud. If convicted, he could face up to 30 years in prison.
The other three suspects are still at large.