Thai police arrest Russian, Uzbeki for alleged cybertheft

AP News
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Posted: Jul 21, 2016 11:48 AM

BANGKOK (AP) — A Russian man and an Uzbek woman were arrested at beach resorts in Thailand and accused of stealing more than $28.5 million by planting malware on the victims' computers and depleting bank accounts in the United States and other countries.

Thailand's Tourist Police announced Thursday that in collaboration with the U.S. FBI it had arrested Dmitry Ukrainsev, 44, in the beach resort town of Pattaya, east of Bangkok, where he ran yacht rental businesses. His alleged accomplice, Olga Komova, 25, was arrested in the beach resort of Koh Chang.

Police Maj. Gen. Surachet Hakphan said U.S. law enforcement had begun investigating in 2014 after suspicious large-scale money transfers were made into Thailand from the United States, Australia, Japan, England, Italy and Germany.

Thailand's Anti-Money Laundering Office found and closed 50 bank accounts the two suspects had in Thailand, the police announcement said.

Surachet said other suspects in the same network have been arrested in the U.S. but he was uncertain Ukrainsev was the mastermind.

It is not rare for foreign fugitives from justice to hide out in Thailand, and there are several arrests each year in the beach resort towns of Pattaya — which is a very popular destination for Russian visitors — and Phuket.