Europol Dismantles Online Fraud Gang

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Europol recently announced that between March 19 and 22, 2014, the Polish National Police, Europol's European Cybercrime Centre (EC3) and eBay worked together to dismantle a group responsible for several online auction fraud scams.

The scams involved the fictitious sale of electronic items to hundreds of victims in Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, India, Italy, Latvia, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain, the U.K., and the U.S. After paying for items such as Mac computers, victims were sent either bricks, fruit or vegetables, or nothing at all.

The group transferred the funds sent for the items to un-registered prepaid cards, then used those cards to withdraw cash at ATMs.

Two suspects were arrested in Pulawy, Poland, while attempting to withdraw cash from an ATM. Searches of their homes turned up prepaid cards, cars, laptops and mobile phones.

"This successful case is a perfect example of very effective cooperation between eBay, the Polish National Police and the EC3 in a crime that affected victims from more than 15 countries on three continents," EC3 head Troels Oerting said in a statement. "By working together, sharing information and coordinating this investigation in multiple jurisdictions we have proven that the criminals might be able to run but they can't hide."