The US FBI arrested Russian rapper Maksim Boiko (aka Maxim Boyko aka “gangass“), 29, on March 28, 2020, in Miami on charges of money laundering via cryptocurrencies. He entered the United States in January with his wife at Miami carrying $20,000 in cash, the FBI said. Maksim Boiko allegedly had an account on BTC-e, a now-defunct Rusian crypto trading platform, where he received $387,964 worth of deposits and had withdrawn 136 BTC – worth about $848,000. In July 2017, US authorities seized the BTC-e.com domain name and arrested suspected BTC-e operator, the Russian Alexander Vinnik. The rapper’s arrest was part of an FBI probe into the QQAAZZ cybercrime organization.
Boiko is a significant cybercriminal who launders money for other cybercriminals through: (1) providing other cybercriminals with access to criminally controlled bank accounts for the purpose of receiving and laundering funds stolen from victims’ online bank accounts; and (2) converting criminally-derived funds from fiat currency into electronic currency, such as Bitcoin.
The FBI has been monitoring Boiko’s Instagram account (@plinofficial) for quite a while, and eventually were granted a search warrant for his Apple iCloud account, which contained photographs of Maksim Boiko posing with loads of U.S. dollars and foreign currencies, the documents show. Boiko has bragged with his money on Instagram visible to the public. Criminal stupidity, isn’t it?
According to Daily Beast, the FBI suspects that Maksim Boiko was collaborating with QQAAZZ. The FBI alleges that Boiko laundered money for “significant cybercriminals” by providing access to “criminally controlled bank accounts.” Allegedly, tens of millions of dollars have been stolen and laundered. Boiko is said to have used Jabber to communicate with other cybercriminals about money laundering operations.
On or about March 20, 2017, a known cybercriminal known as “Moneybooster” had a chat with firstname.lastname@example.org.Moneybooster asked “gangass” for a corporate account that could receive a wire of about “200-300k.” Within minutes, gangass responded by providing the following account […]Affidavit FBI Agent
The QQAAZZ cybercrime organization comprises individuals from more than a dozen countries, including Georgia, Bulgaria, and Latvia. QQAAZZ registered dozens of shell companies to open corporate bank accounts at financial institutions in several countries, including the U.K., Portugal, Spain, Germany, Belgium, Turkey and the Netherlands. These accounts are used to receive and launder stolen money, the FBI alleges. The network has been under investigation by the FBI.
In January 2020 US prosecutors filed an indictment against five Latvians with charges of conspiracy charges related to QQAAZZ.
- Aleksejs Trofimovics (Atrofi95 )
- Ruslans Nikitenko
- Arturs Zaharevics
- Deniss Ruseckis
- Deinis Gorenko
Aleksejs Trofimovics is alleged to have run a crypto exchange that was seized by law enforcement in 2017, the court documents note. On Boiko’s phone, the FBI also found several communications with Aleksejs Trofivmovics including multiple screenshots of bitcoin wallet addresses and transactions.
Read more about Maksim Boiko on FinTelegram