Russian Man Pleads Guilty to Hacking, Fraud Charges in Data Thefts From U.S. Firms

New York, NY(Law Firm Newswire) December 12, 2019 – A Russian man admitted to taking part in a hacking operation that involved launching cyberattacks on a dozen American companies, including JPMorgan Chase, Dow Jones and Fidelity Investments. The scheme used stolen data for stock manipulation and illegal online gambling enterprises, netting tens of millions of dollars.

Andrei Tyurin, 36, pleaded guilty to six felony counts in U.S. District Court in Manhattan. They included bank fraud, wire fraud, conspiracy to commit computer hacking and illegal online gambling. Prosecutors said he participated in the hacking scheme from 2012 to 2015.

Tyurin was accused of helping to steal personal data from the accounts of more than 80 million JPMorgan Chase clients. The cyberattacks also targeted brokerage firms, financial news publishers, banks and other financial institutions.

“Hacking generally involves taking advantage of security vulnerabilities to gain unauthorized access to a computer or network. These types of crimes are relatively new, so law enforcement is still grappling with how to deal with them,” commented Peter Brill, a New York criminal defense attorney with Brill Legal Group, who is not involved with the case. “People accused of hacking and other cybercrimes need intelligent, experienced legal representation as such charges can be highly technical. They require a deep understanding of the law and other issues that are at play, as well as an ability to stand up to the evidence presented by the prosecution.”

Tyurin was arrested in the country of Georgia and extradited to the United States in September 2018. He was the first individual to be convicted in the case. Charges against three other co-conspirators are pending. Prosecutors built their case against Tyurin using evidence recovered from the electronic devices of the other defendants and over 3,000 pages of digital chats in Russian between them.

Prosecutors said Israeli businessman Gery Shalon masterminded the hacking scheme. Tyurin participated in it at his direction after being hired to gain entry into vulnerable computer systems. The scheme allegedly encompassed a wide range of illegal digital activity including identity theft and money laundering via a Bitcoin exchange. Tyurin’s lawyer said in a statement that the Russian national’s role in the scheme was “limited” and that he hoped “to return to his wife and young daughter as soon as possible.”

Federal prison records indicated Tyurin was being held at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Manhattan. His sentencing was scheduled for Feb. 13, 2020. As part of a deal with prosecutors, the government will recommend that he serve 15 to 20 years in prison, though the judge will ultimately decide his sentence.

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