“Hundreds of bank accounts used to launder profits of cyber theft” reports National Crime Agency

Two individuals responsible for laundering millions of pounds stolen using the malicious software Dridex have been sentenced to a total of 12 years in prison following a joint investigation by the National Crime Agency and the Metropolitan Police Service. Over a two-year period, Pavel Gincota, 32, and 35 year-old Ion Turcan (both Moldovan nationals with Romanian Citizenship) funded a luxury lifestyle by laundering over £2.5 million worth of criminal profits through more than 220 bank accounts.

The money had been stolen by means of using Dridex, a malicious software (ie malware) sent via e-mail attachment which, when opened, allows criminals to remotely access the victim’s device and record their bank details.

Gincota and Turcan were under investigation by the National Crime Agency when they were arrested by Metropolitan Police Service officers in February last year for being in possession of multiple false identity documents. In a subsequent search of the pair’s home in Yiewsley, West Drayton, officers seized further fraudulent documents and several electronic devices.

Forensic examination of the devices by the NCA National Cyber Crime Unit confirmed that a laptop belonging to Gincota had been used to control the bank accounts through which the money was laundered. The pair were charged with conspiracy to possess false identification and conspiracy to launder money and were remanded in custody. Gincota was also charged with a separate money laundering offence in relation to a cyber fraud committed in Germany that occurred back in 2012 as a result of which the victim lost 25,000 Euros.

Both Gincota and Turcan pleaded guilty to all the charges against them and were sentenced at the Old Bailey on Tuesday 4 October to five years and eight months and seven years respectively.

Steve Brown, senior investigating officer at the NCA National Cyber Crime Unit, said: “Pavel Gincota and Ion Turcan were serial money launderers who processed millions of pounds worth of stolen money through hundreds of bank accounts to fund their lifestyles. Those involved in the most serious types of organised crime depend on the services provided by money launderers like Gincota and Turcan to hide their criminal profits. The NCA will continue to work closely with our law enforcement partners to prevent organised criminals from accessing the proceeds of their crimes and to bring them to justice.”

About the Author
Brian Sims BA (Hons) Hon FSyI, Editor, Risk UK (Pro-Activ Publications) Beginning his career in professional journalism at The Builder Group in March 1992, Brian was appointed Editor of Security Management Today in November 2000 having spent eight years in engineering journalism across two titles: Building Services Journal and Light & Lighting. In 2005, Brian received the BSIA Chairman’s Award for Promoting The Security Industry and, a year later, the Skills for Security Special Award for an Outstanding Contribution to the Security Business Sector. In 2008, Brian was The Security Institute’s nomination for the Association of Security Consultants’ highly prestigious Imbert Prize and, in 2013, was a nominated finalist for the Institute's George van Schalkwyk Award. An Honorary Fellow of The Security Institute, Brian serves as a Judge for the BSIA’s Security Personnel of the Year Awards and the Securitas Good Customer Award. Between 2008 and 2014, Brian pioneered the use of digital media across the security sector, including webinars and Audio Shows. Brian’s actively involved in 50-plus security groups on LinkedIn and hosts the popular Risk UK Twitter site. Brian is a frequent speaker on the conference circuit. He has organised and chaired conference programmes for both IFSEC International and ASIS International and has been published in the national media. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk UK at Pro-Activ Publications in July 2014 and as Editor of The Paper (Pro-Activ Publications' dedicated business newspaper for security professionals) in September 2015. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk Xtra at Pro-Activ Publications in May 2018.

Related Posts