A Russian man and an Uzbek woman wanted in the US for embezzling more than one billion baht from victims in several countries by using malware to steal data from online bank accounts have been arrested in Thailand after 10 years on the run.
Dmitry Ukrainsky, 44, a Russian national, and Olga Komova, 25, of Uzbekistan, were taken to a media briefing at the Immigration Bureau on Thursday.
Mr Ukrainsky was apprehended in Chon Buri’s Pattaya area, where he was running a firm providing yacht rental services to tourists. Ms Komova was caught at a hotel on Koh Chang island in Trat, where she had been working. The duo had entered Thailand 10 years ago.
Pol Maj Gen Surachet Hakphan, commander of the Tourist Police Division, said the arrests were made at the request of the US Federal Bureau of Investigation, which accused the pair of creating and distributing malware to steal data from bank accounts of victims living in the United States, Australia, Japan, England, Italy and Germany.
They allegedly used the data to transfer money from the victims’ online bank accounts to their own bank accounts.
The FBI began the investigation in 2014 by tracing the transactions and found that the money had been wired to Thailand, said Pol Maj Gen Surachet. The FBI had sought help from Thai authorities to arrest the pair.
The Anti-Money Laundering Office later confiscated at least 50 bank accounts held by the two foreign suspects. They allegedly stole more than one billion baht.
Pol Maj Gen Surachet said the two suspects would be extradited to the US for trial.