Infamous cyber criminal evades harsh prison sentence

In 2008, popular electronic payment service RBS WorldPay admitted to being hacked by a gang of cyber criminals who stole sensitive information to create cloned debit cards.

The digital gang then used the cloned cards to withdraw approximately $10 million from ATMs. In total, they lifted more than 2,100 ATM cards in 280 cities worldwide.

One of the gang’s ring leaders, 27-year-old Yevgeny Anikin, spent his cut of the money on a luxury car and two fancy apartments in the Russian city of Novosibirsk before his capture in 2009. He has been under house arrest for the past two years.

But according to local reports, Anikin recently escaped from jail.

And not in the traditional file and spoon escape method a la Alcatraz, but rather Anikin  avoided jail time through a partial pardon by the Russian court system itself.

Local legislators quote Anikin as saying he hopes to repay all his debts stating in court, “I want to say that I repent and fully admit my guilt.”

The court is therefore offering his a five-year suspended sentence instead of hard prison time.

The light sentence seems kind of tame, especially after United States Attorney Sally Quillian Yates called the crime “perhaps the most sophisticated and organized computer fraud attack ever conducted.”

(Via Sophos Naked Security)