Finland detains Russian accused of U.S. malware crimes

Reuters News
Posted: Aug 27, 2015 9:23 AM

HELSINKI (Reuters) - Finland confirmed on Thursday it has detained a Russian citizen, Maxim Senakh, at the request of U.S. federal authorities on computer fraud charges, in a move that Russia calls illegal.

The Finnish justice ministry says Senakh is accused in the state of Minnesota of infecting computer servers with malware, resulting in criminal gains worth millions of dollars.

Konstantin Dolgov, the Russian Foreign Ministry's special representative for human rights, said on Wednesday that Senakh's detention was "another demonstration of the illegal practice of detaining Russian citizens abroad launched by U.S. authorities."

If Finland had suspicions that Senakh was involved in illegal activity, it would have been more logical to send such information to Russia, Dolgov added in a statement.

The Finnish justice ministry said U.S. authorities have 45 days from the start of Senakh's detention to submit an official extradition request.

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John Stossel

Dolgov said Russia's position was that Senakh could not be handed over to U.S. authorities. Senakh was detained on Aug. 8, the ministry said.

(Reporting by Anna Ercanbrack; Additional reporting by Alexander Winning; Editing by Ruth Pitchford)