Cybercrime Gang Busted in Spain

February 14, 2013, By Sanjeev Ramachandran

A multinational gang of cyber criminals have been busted by the Spanish authorities in the Costa del Sol of Spain. Europol, the European police agency has registered the arrest of ten members of the gang who were operating from the Mediterranean cities of Torremolinos and Benalmadena.

The arrest came close on the heels of the recent detainment of the ring leader, a 27-year-old Russian, in the United Arab Emirates. The ten include six Russians, two Ukrainians and two Georgians.

The outlaws were injecting ransomware, a type of virus, all across Europe that potentially locked affected computers with a fake accusing message to the user as the blocking action was taken by the police for abusive use of internet.


Victims saw a message displayed that said they have been detected for searching child pornography or have made unlawful file sharing and demanded a fine of €100 ($135 US) if they are to unlock the computer.

Rob Wainwright, the director of Europol, explained during a news conference at the Interior Ministry in Madrid that this break in is the “first major kind of crime which they identified in the last two years”.

According to Wainwright, the gang found success in making 3 percent of the victims paying up their “fine”.

Europol hasn’t revealed more details on how much money they had laundered, but Francisco Martínez, Deputy Interior Minister of Spain, said they have grabbed more than 1 million euros from Spain alone.

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