Three young men, two from Florida and one from UK, are facing charges on the recent hacking attack that targeted over 100 Twitter accounts, for example multiple high-profile accounts, in a bid to collect bitcoin contributions.
Graham Ivan Clark, 17, was arrested early on July 31 and charged with 30 felony charges on the scam, Hillsborough State Attorney Andrew Warren’s office said in a statement.
The Tampa teenager, believed to be a part of the attack, managed to access numerous Twitter accounts, such as those of former US President Barack Obama, US presidential candidate Joe Biden, billionaires Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk, rapper Kanye West and his wife, model Kim Kardashian.
He then posted tweets from many of the accounts claiming that they wanted to “give back to the community” and could double Bitcoin donations sent to an attached speech.
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Clark managed to amass over $100,000 in Bitcoin within just one afternoon, the lawyer ’s office confirmed.
They were identified as Mason Sheppard, aka “Chaewon,” 19, of Bognor Regis, in the United Kingdom, also Nima Fazeli, aka “Rolex,” 22, of Orlando, Florida. Shappard was accused of “conspiracy to commit wire fraud, conspiracy to commit money laundering, and the deliberate access of a protected computer” while Fazeli was charged with “aiding and abetting the deliberate access of a protected computer.
The charges came as a result of both “a intricate nationwide evaluation ” conducted by local investigators together with the FBI, the Internal Revenue Service and the Secret Service. The US Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of California and Florida’s Department of Law authorities were also involved.
“There’s a false belief within the criminal hacker community that attacks like the Twitter hack can be dedicated anonymously and without consequence,” said a US Attorney David Anderson while a Secret Service Special Agent in Charge, Thomas Edwards added that “now ’s announcement proves that cybercriminals can no longer hide behind perceived international anonymity.
While the research into the scam has been headed by the FBI and deals with national crimes, Clark is going to be enticed with a Florida court, since the state’s law allows minors to be charged as adults in financial fraud cases.
“All these crimes were perpetrated using the titles of famous people and actors, but theyrsquo;re not the key victims ,” Warren said, explaining that the actual goal was regular Americans who the teen wanted to swindle money out of.
“This ‘Bit-Con’ has been developed to steal cash from regular Americans from throughout the country, such as here in Florida. This massive fraud has been orchestrated right here in our backyard, and we will not stand for that,” he included.
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