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U.S. Extradited Russian Accused of Money-Laundering Tied to Ryuk Ransomware Gang

A Russian nationwide who was extradited from the Netherlands to Portland, Ore., this week pleaded not responsible to costs of allegedly laundering cryptocurrency proceeds from ransomware assaults within the U.S. and overseas, the Justice Department stated.

Denis Dubnikov,

a 29-year-old Russian, was arraigned in federal courtroom for the District of Oregon on Wednesday. Prosecutors alleged that Mr. Dubnikov and his co-conspirators laundered bitcoin extracted from victims of Ryuk ransomware assaults by way of monetary transactions, in each crypto and fiat currencies, to conceal the supply of the funds.

After getting into his plea, Mr. Dubnikov was launched from custody underneath a number of situations, together with monitoring of his laptop exercise, in accordance to courtroom paperwork.

At least twelve extra people are dealing with costs within the case, in accordance to a courtroom indictment unsealed Wednesday. Their names have been redacted within the indictment, and prosecutors didn’t establish Mr. Dubnikov’s alleged co-conspirators.

A Moscow entrepreneur, Mr. Dubnikov was detained whereas on trip in Mexico final November, The Wall Street Journal beforehand reported. He was expelled from Mexico and placed on a airplane to Amsterdam, the place Dutch police arrested him on Nov. 2 on a U.S. cost of conspiracy to commit money-laundering, in accordance to his lawyer

Arkady Bukh.

He meant to plead not responsible to a U.S. cost of conspiracy to commit money-laundering, his lawyer stated on the time.

The DOJ accused Mr. Dubnikov of receiving and laundering greater than $400,000 in Ryuk proceeds in 2019, and alleges these concerned within the conspiracy laundered no less than $70 million in ransom proceeds.

Identified in 2018, Ryuk is a kind of ransomware that encrypts recordsdata and makes an attempt to delete any system backups on a pc or community. The Ryuk actors directed victims to pay in bitcoin and supplied them with a pockets deal with to make the ransom funds, in accordance to courtroom paperwork.

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Ryuk has been used to goal hundreds of victims worldwide, and U.S. authorities have identified it as an growing risk particularly to hospitals and healthcare providers within the U.S.

Mr. Dubnikov is scheduled to face a jury trial beginning on Oct. 4. If convicted, he faces up to 20 years in jail.

David Angeli,

an lawyer at Angeli Law Group LLC in Portland, Ore., who’s representing Mr. Dubnikov, declined to remark.

The extradition comes as ransomware continues to be one of the top cybersecurity risks dealing with the Biden administration. Last 12 months alone, ransomware assaults stopped the delivery of gasoline and different gas by way of the Colonial Pipeline; threatened the nation’s meals provide by shutting down meatpacker


and put in danger sufferers’ lives by closing down hospital computer systems throughout a pandemic.

Ransomware assaults are growing in frequency, sufferer losses are skyrocketing, and hackers are shifting their targets. WSJ’s Dustin Volz explains why these assaults are on the rise and what the U.S. can do to combat them. Photo illustration: Laura Kammermann

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Appeared within the August 19, 2022, print version as ‘U.S. Links Russian to Laundering.’

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