A Sydney man has been sentenced to three years and six months’ imprisonment for accessing bank accounts of victims in Australia and transferring the stolen funds to members of an international money laundering syndicate.
An AFP Cybercrime investigation revealed the man, 27, was a member of an international money laundering syndicate led by a person known as ‘the Russian’.
‘The Russian’ sent the Sydney man stolen identification details and bank login credentials on five separate occasions. The man used this information to log into Australian bank accounts and fraudulently transferred a total of $92,000 from five victims.
Some of the stolen funds are suspected to have been later withdrawn in cash and deposited into cryptocurrency ATMs.
AFP Eastern Command Cybercrime investigators executed a search warrant at the man’s home in Brighton-Le-Sands on 11 February 2021 and later charged him with:
- Commit offence for the benefit of a criminal organisation, contrary to section 390.5(1) of the Criminal Code 1995 (Cth);
- Using a carriage service to menace, harass or cause offence, contrary to section 474.17 of the Criminal Code 1995 (Cth); and
- Failure to provide information and assistance that was reasonable and necessary to allow access to data held in accessible form from a computer that was on warrant premises/person, contrary to section 3LA of the Crimes Act 1914 (Cth).
He pleaded guilty to the charges on 2 February 2023.
The man was sentenced to three years and six months’ imprisonment by the Downing Centre District Court on 27 February 2023. He will be eligible for parole on 25 February 2025.
AFP Detective Acting Superintendent Nuckhley Succar said criminal syndicates have little regard for everyday Australians and only care about filling their pockets.
“Australians are struggling with the current cost of living and having their slowly built savings stolen from them is a massive setback,” Det A-Supt Nuckhley Succar said.
“The AFP is committed to identifying these criminals and through our partnerships with financial institutions and law enforcement agencies in Australia and offshore, stopping them from harming more Australians.”
Investigations into the activities of the international money laundering syndicate are ongoing.
The AFP-led Joint Policing Cybercrime Coordination Centre (JPC3) uses collective legislative powers, experience, and investigative and intelligence capabilities from all Australian policing jurisdictions to inflict maximum impact on high harm, high volume cybercrime affecting the Australian community.
If you believe you are a victim of Cybercrime, report it to ReportCyber at cyber.gov.au.