Developing: Russian Programmer Accused of Hacking Extradited to US

Programmer also wanted in Russia on cyber-crime charges

Image Credits: David Whelan, Flickr.

Russian programmer Pyotr Levashov, accused by US prosecutors of being the mastermind behind a large bot net has been extradited to the US from Spain and will appear in court Friday.

In a statement Friday, the US Justice Department said Levashov is “alleged to have controlled and operated the Kelihos botnet which was used to distribute hundreds of millions of fraudulent e-mails per year; intercept credentials to online and financial accounts belonging to thousands of Americans; and spread ransomware throughout our networks.” The suspected hacker is expected to appear before a US Magistrates Court in Connecticut Friday evening.

Levashov had previously said his life would be in danger if Spanish authorities complied with the US extradition request, and afraid that he might face torture in the US “in order to extract Russian secrets.”

The programmer is also wanted in Russia on cyber-crime charges, including hacking the site of a medical facility in St. Petersburg and spreading malware. Moscow issued an international warrant for his arrest in August.

Check for updates here