Manhattan U.S. Attorney and FBI Assistant Director in Charge Announce Extradition of Russian Citizen to Face Charges for International Cyber Crimes

January 17, 2012

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) on January 17, 2012 released the following:

“Nine-Count Indictment Charges Defendants with Stealing Personal and Financial Information and Stock Market Manipulation

Preet Bharara, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, and Janice K. Fedarcyk, the Assistant Director in Charge of the New York Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (“FBI”), announced today the unsealing of a nine-count indictment charging VLADIMIR ZDOROVENIN and his son, KIRILL ZDOROVENIN, two Russian citizens, with conspiracy, mail fraud, wire fraud, computer fraud, aggravated identity theft, and securities fraud. They were indicted under seal in May 2007. VLADIMIR ZDOROVENIN was apprehended on March 27, 2011, in Zurich, Switzerland, and arrived in New York yesterday following his extradition by Swiss authorities. He will be presented and arraigned before U.S. Magistrate Judge Gabriel W. Gorenstein in Manhattan federal court later today. KIRILL ZDOROVENIN remains at large.

Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said: “Cyber crime is a pandemic that makes geography meaningless. From far away, with the click of a mouse, the cyber criminal can victimize millions of people in the U.S. As alleged, Vladimir Zdorovenin and his son did exactly that; they engaged in serial cyber crimes in Russia that targeted Americans and wrought havoc with their personal and financial information, using it to make phony purchases and to manipulate stock prices. As the unsealing of today’s Indictment demonstrates, we will reach out across the globe, and wait as long as it takes to bring cyber criminals to justice.”

FBI Assistant Director in Charge Janice K. Fedarcyk stated: “Mr. Zdorovenin’s egregious behavior illustrated the true colors of the cyber underground, as he and his son allegedly defrauded consumers of hundreds of thousands of dollars using methods that included compromised credit cards, all fronted through fictitious companies they had created. In addition, Zdorovenin allegedly installed malware to access victims’ brokerage accounts, trading victims’ securities and manipulating the price of stocks Zdorovenin already owned. This should serve as a stark reminder to anyone who believes he can commit cyber crime and hide behind the safety and anonymity of a Russian IP address; you are not beyond the reach of the FBI.”

According to the indictment unsealed today in Manhattan federal court:

At various times between 2004 and 2005, VLADIMIR ZDOROVENIN and his son KIRILL ZDOROVENIN allegedly engaged in a series of crimes in Russia that victimized citizens of the United States through the use of stolen credit card information, multiple phony websites, and bank accounts in Russia and Latvia. Specifically, the indictment alleges that the ZDOROVENINs stole victims’ personal identification information, including credit card numbers, through the use of computer programs that were surreptitiously installed on victims’ computers and that recorded the information as it was entered. The ZDOROVENINs also allegedly purchased stolen credit card numbers from other individuals, and used the stolen credit card information to make what appeared to be legitimate purchases of goods from various Internet businesses that they ran. However, as alleged, the purchases were fraudulent and were used as a means of deceiving banks, credit card service processors, credit card holders, and others, thereby enabling the ZDOROVENINS to steal the money they directed to their websites.

Additionally, as alleged in the indictment, the ZDOROVENINs, used the Internet to unlawfully access the financial services accounts of victims located in the United States and then transferred or attempted to transfer hundreds of thousands of dollars from those accounts to bank accounts under the ZDOROVENINs’ control. Finally, the Indictment charges that after taking over victims’ online brokerage accounts, the ZDOROVENINs bought and sold thousands of shares of certain companies’ stock in an effort to manipulate the prices of those stocks. The ZDOROVENINs allegedly realized profits through this scheme by simultaneously purchasing or selling shares of the same stocks through their own online brokerage account, maintained in the name of Rim Investment Management, Ltd.

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VLADIMIR ZDOROVENIN, 54, of Moscow, Russia, faces a maximum sentence of 142 years in prison in connection with the charges in the indictment. The case has been assigned to U.S. District Judge Paul G. Gardephe.

Mr. Bharara praised the outstanding investigative work of the FBI. He also thanked the Office of International Affairs in the U.S. Department of Justice’s Criminal Division for its assistance with the extradition.

This case is being handled by the Office’s Complex Frauds Unit. Assistant U.S. Attorneys James J. Pastore, Jr. and Thomas G.A. Brown are in charge of the prosecution.

The charge and allegations contained in the Indictment are merely accusations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.”

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Douglas McNabb – McNabb Associates, P.C.’s
International Extradition Lawyers Videos:

International Extradition – When the FBI Seeks Extradition

International Extradition – Wire Transfer – Email – Telephone Call

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To find additional global criminal news, please read The Global Criminal Defense Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.


Ex-‘Survivor’ producer’s extradition in wife’s slaying is upheld

December 22, 2011

Los Angeles Times on December 22, 2011 released the following:

“A federal judge has ruled that there is enough evidence to justify extraditing a former “Survivor” TV show producer to Mexico to face trial in his wife’s slaying.

Bruce Beresford-Redman is charged with killing his wife, Monica, while on holiday in Cancun. Her body was found in a sewer at the resort hotel where the couple was vacationing with their children in April 2010.

The couple had allegedly argued about his infidelities at the hotel, and other hotel guests reported hearing loud noises and cries for help coming from the room.

In July, a U.S. magistrate judge ruled there was probable cause to extradite Beresford-Redman to Mexico.

The producer, who maintains he is innocent, asked U.S. District Court Judge Philip S. Gutierrez to overturn the decision, saying there was not enough evidence to constitute probable cause for extradition.

Gutierrez denied the request Wednesday, citing “pages upon pages of competent evidence demonstrating that the fugitive committed the offense for which extradition was sought.”

“The Certification [of Extraditability] summarizes the infidelity, fighting, screaming from the hotel room, the fugitive’s opportunity to dispose of the victim’s body, the ultimate location of the victim’s body (25 meters from the hotel room), the victim leaving her cellphone behind, scratches and abrasions upon the fugitive’s body, and the fugitive’s flight. All of this evidence points to homicide committed by the fugitive,” he wrote.

The defense team could still file a petition with the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals to overturn the decision. Otherwise, the U.S. State Department will make the ultimate decision on the extradition request.”

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Douglas McNabb – McNabb Associates, P.C.’s
International Extradition Lawyers Videos:

International Extradition – When the FBI Seeks Extradition

International Extradition – Wire Transfer – Email – Telephone Call

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We previously discussed the extradition treaty between the United States and Mexico here.

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To find additional global criminal news, please read The Global Criminal Defense Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.


Bruce Beresford-Redman, a TV Producer, to be Sent to Mexico to Stand Trial

July 12, 2011

Times Union on July 12, 2011 released the following:

“ANTHONY McCARTNEY, AP Entertainment Writer

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A judge on Tuesday ordered a reality TV producer to be returned to Mexico to face a charge that he killed his wife while on a family vacation 15 months ago.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Jacqueline Chooljian issued her ruling after a nearly two-hour extradition hearing in Los Angeles.

Bruce Beresford-Redman has been jailed since November on a fugitive warrant issued after Mexican authorities in Cancun charged him with the aggravated homicide of his wife, Monica Beresford-Redman.

He could face between 12 and 30 years in prison if convicted.

The former “Survivor” producer can appeal the ruling, and federal prosecutors said it could be at least a year before he is sent to Mexico if he pursues all his U.S. appeals.

Beresford-Redman did not react during the hearing. He appeared in court in a jail jumpsuit and was shackled throughout the hearing.

His attorney, Richard Hirsch, argued there were major inconsistencies in the evidence, and extradition should be rejected. Chooljian, however, said she made her ruling after considering the totality of the evidence and that there was probable cause that Beresford-Redman killed his wife.

His attorneys have said he is innocent and challenged the case against him, calling it a rush to judgment.

Monica Beresford-Redman’s body was found in a sewer cistern at an upscale Cancun resort in April 2010.

Alison Triessl, an attorney for her family, said the victim’s sisters were happy with the result but realize it is another step in a long process.

“They know there will probably be appeal after appeal,” Triessl said. “It’s an important day for justice. It’s an important day so they can rebuild their lives.”

Monica Beresford-Redman owned a popular Brazilian-themed restaurant in Los Angeles.

Chooljian’s ruling came after defense lawyers withdrew a request to call as a witness the 6-year-old daughter of Bruce Beresford-Redman amid unspecified concerns about the girl’s ability to testify in defense of her father.

After months of attempting to discredit Mexican authorities and attacking the case, Beresford-Redman made another attempt Tuesday to persuade the magistrate judge that he should be freed.

The couple had gone on the trip to try to repair their marriage, which had been damaged by an affair Bruce Beresford-Redman had with a co-worker.

His attorneys claim Mexican authorities rushed to judgment and built a case accusing Bruce Beresford-Redman based on motive rather than physical evidence.

Calling the couple’s 6-year-old daughter to testify during the hearing could have been problematic.

Witnesses are not generally called during extradition proceedings, and calling a child witness might have presented issues of who would question the girl and whether her testimony should be conducted in a closed session.

Statements filed by her therapist and one of Bruce Beresford-Redman’s attorneys suggested the girl would have testified that she never saw her father act violently toward her mother during the Cancun vacation.

The girl also told the therapist and attorney that she recalled her mother leaving the hotel room to go shopping on the day she went missing.

The defendants attorneys argue that the producer had no obligation to remain in Cancun while his wife’s death was investigated, although federal prosecutors and Mexican authorities both say his return to Los Angeles was illegal and should count against him in the extradition proceeding.

Prosecutors say there is overwhelming evidence against the producer that justifies his being sent to Mexico. In court filings, they cite a resort worker’s recollection that he saw someone matching Bruce Beresford-Redman’s description attempting to strike a woman during an argument at the hotel.

They also point to a noise complaint from tourists in another room that cited screams that appeared to be coming from a woman in distress coming from the Beresford-Redmans’ hotel room.”

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN List Removal.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.

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Judge Hears Arguments in Azra Bašic’s Extradition Case For Alleged War Crimes

July 10, 2011

Kentucky.com on July 9, 2011 released the following:

“By Greg Kocher

A U.S. magistrate judge heard oral arguments Friday concerning the extradition of a woman wanted by authorities in Bosnia and Herzegovina for alleged war crimes against civilians.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Robert E. Wier made no decision except to change a scheduled Aug. 22 extradition hearing in U.S. District Court in Lexington to a status conference. No new date was scheduled for that extradition hearing.

The woman, whom authorities refer to as Azra Bašic, was arrested in March in Powell County, where she had been living for some time. She is accused of torturing and murdering ethnic Serbs at prison camps from April to June 1992, during the Bosnian civil war.

Bašic, a naturalized U.S. citizen, sat silently as her attorney, Patrick Nash, argued that the extradition petition against her should be dismissed because there is no formal treaty regarding extradition between the United States and Bosnia and Herzegovina. Furthermore, a 1902 treaty between Serbia and the United States prohibits extradition of U.S. citizens.

In addition, Nash argued that Bašic cannot be extradited because the statute of limitations ran out. Finally, Nash said extradition cannot proceed because Bosnia and Herzegovina have not produced a valid warrant.

But Assistant U.S. Attorney James Arehart said an extradition treaty is in force between the United States and Bosnia and Herzegovina, and he submitted an affidavit from a legal adviser with the U.S. State Department that said an extradition treaty is in force. Arehart also countered that Congress granted authority to the U.S. secretary of state to extradite U.S. citizens.

Arehart’s written response to Nash’s motion to dismiss notes that U.S. district courts around the country have found at least four other people to be extraditable to Bosnia and Herzegovina on the basis of an extradition treaty.

Arehart also argued that the extradition request satisfies the treaty requirements regarding statute of limitations. And the request from Bosnia and Herzegovina more than satisfies any warrant requirement, Arehart argued.

Before the hearing began, Wier said the case is like an onion in many respects, because there are so many layers to it.

Wier wants to know about more layers, too. He asked the lawyers to submit written briefs on the legal effect of charging someone whose name isn’t known. In the initial charges issued against her in 1993, Bašic wasn’t fully identified, and the international warrant for her arrest wasn’t issued until 2006.

In addition, Wier wants to know whether U.S. torture laws can be applied retroactively to conduct that allegedly happened before the laws were enacted.”

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN List Removal.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.

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