back to article Feds seize $15m from scareware monger's Swiss account

Federal authorities have seized $15m from a fugitive accused of bilking millions of people in scareware and counterfeit antivirus software scams. Mugshot of Jain provided by ICE Mugshot of Shaileshkumar Jain Members of the Department of Homeland Security's Immigration and Customers Enforcement division confiscated the $14.8m …

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Mushroom

What will happen to the money?

Will they return the money to those who were scammed? All these scammers are scum.

I know that the majority here will probably say "They deserved it, because they should have known it was a scam." Let me say to those people, I sure hope you don't complain when a mechanic rips you off for repairs to your car!

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Meh

So his crime was...

Shearing sheep?

Or shearing other people's sheep?

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Megaphone

Ha Ha

Symantec should hire him to sell their own scamware. how many of their sales team have sold $100 Million dollars worth of AV?

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So...

are they going to return these money to people who bought his wares? No?

How typical...

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Stop

Typical...

How would you do that? Ask him for the meticulously kept records he was making? Put ads out asking people to prove they were.... unwise?

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Anonymous Coward

Cash ?

Well unless people popped around and paid him in cash then I would imagine that there will be a paper trail ??

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Thumb Down

indeed

money leaves a trail. Paypal? Credit card transactions?

Oh no, that would be work. Lets pocket the money instead.

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Mushroom

Re: So...

So you think he ought to be allowed to keep it then?

I'm sure most criminals would be delighted with the principle of; "We know this is stolen, but as we can't work out exactly who you stole this from you can keep it."

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@Pawel 1

"are they going to return these money to people who bought his wares? No?

How typical..."

And how do you know the answer is no . The feds do return money to the victims. I don't know were you live but here the police do return money to victims .

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Victim most likely to get compensation here

is probably Symantec. When they catch a person selling fake Rolexes, who gets the damages? Those who bought the watches or Rolex?

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WTF?

Swiss Bank ?

Obviously a good thing that this low life has been caught BUT since when did Swiss banks do what the US told them too ?

I always thought that people used Swiss accounts because of the ethics of the Swiss banking system and the fact that they would divulge no information to anybody ?

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Nope.

Got to go elsewhere for that, now. Been that way for a while.

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ditto

I was about to post the same thing!

maybe bitcoins would have been better - he could have upped the market value of each coin purely by the amount he was using

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Anonymous Coward

To the whiners

The guy nicked $100m, the feds located $15m. So how do you go on "refunding" the people scammed?

Q1. Describe in 200 words how you are going to get a list of scammed customers.

Q2. Select your fair solution for refunding people seeing that a small fraction of the money has been located:

[ ] musical chairs

[ ] wheel of fortune

[ ] lottery with names on pieces of paper drawn for a hat

[ ] bingo

Q3. Describe in 200 words how your solution is fairer than what the feds are going to do (which has not been specified), and how you are going to convince the losers.

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A bank?

So...he didn't appear for his court date, he skipped the country (most probably), and he kept $15MM in...a BANK?

Two words for Sam: Bearer bonds, dude, bearer bonds...

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Black Helicopters

Bearer Bonds?

No one sells Bearer bonds these days.

Please do enlighten who still sells bearer bonds? Which Country? And how safe it is (i.e. the bank won't scam you :) )?

US stopped issuing new bearer bonds in 1982.

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WTF?

DHS

Homeland Security did this? Was this scumbag a threat to the National Security of the US?

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Silver badge

DHS is a kluge.

Anything remotely tied to Homeland Security was thrown into the mongrel agency, even if most of its responsibilities lie elsewhere, as is the case with the FBI. FBI investigates wire fraud and fleeing felons who cross state lines, which would seem to be the relevant offenses.

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Facepalm

Offshore protection from US

It continues to amaze me that criminals can sometimes come up with ingenious schemes to obtain illicit funds and then don't use two brain cell that anyone else would in there situation for any other aspect of their "business".

If you're going to try to scam the US - the dominant political, economically and arguably financial country in the world,

0) Don't put all your eggs in one basket.

1) Conduct as much of the business outside of the US and all its allies, which basically rules out all large European countries and affiliated offshore jurisdictions, e.g. Switzerland, Cayman Islands, Panama, BVI. Your best bet is a Chinese, Middle East or African offshore jurisdiction, such as Singapore, Hong Kong, Dubai with non-US and non-EU banks.

2) Use a company or trust rather than personal account and it is also possible to put in place protections that redirect and split funds further to other jurisdictions as soon as any enquiries are made about the account.

Even if all these options are not available at the start of a business, they would quickly become available with $1m to $10m (let alone the $100m in the article) of funds! This is all public information that anyone can research or obtain from speaking to an offshore tax accountant or lawyer. Even criminals (good criminals) can afford and use such confidential services even if they are eventually caught, their capital is safe...

I guess he's learned this the hard way!

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Holmes

Right, so take a chance on losing the money,

or take a chance on losing a limb or worse....

Let me think about that for a minute...

'cause scumbags like him are real good at calculating how much worse the scumbags around him are.

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Anonymous Coward

Why assume...

...that he hasn't got another 15 or 20 million (or more) stashed somewhere else? With gross proceeds of 100m and presumably rather low cost-of-goods ;P he should have been running fairly good margins. It's not unreasonable at all to think he has a pretty big wad of wazoonga wedged elsewhere - Hong Kong, Dubai, King Kong, Mogadishu, Walla Walla Washington, etc...

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Anonymous Coward

or.... he may have been good

and left them a 15M account that they were supposed to find....then again, he may have just been an idiot.

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Black Helicopters

Re: Offshore protection from US

"2) Use a company or trust rather than personal account and it is also possible to put in place protections that redirect and split funds further to other jurisdictions as soon as any enquiries are made about the account."

I have read about "asset protection", main things are:

(correct me if I am wrong)

#1. If you use a Trust, then the offshore lawyer can steal your money. As you are giving the lawyers power of attorney over the money.

#2. Yes you can make a company but I assume you have to be the Shareholder and the founder and the director of the said company?

#3. How can you make it such that if there is any inquiry the money is automatically redirected?

#4. It is in the Bank's interest to Freeze the assets, so they can still earn interest, and the money is not moved from the Bank.

#5. I don't know where Banks are required to divulge to you that there has been an inquiry on the account.

When you say "non-US and non-EU banks" do you mean HSBC? Because they are there everywhere, and they also cater to offshore residents.

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Pirate

Passport please

The feds can still find out where he stashed the money based on his Passport.

It will have stamps of the countries he visited, no?

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Boffin

You assume all banks work the same way ...

In offshore jurisdictions where privacy is important, many banks, especially private banks, operate managed and numbered accounts ala the classic Swiss model.

Accounts are managed by individual bankers who are the only ones who hold a set of books to specifically associate the account numbers with an entity. Even for the bank management to find out who holds any given account - which is a request normally never made in the old days - they would have to ask the banker, who may even enjoy state laws that protect them and the bank if they refuse to break confidentiality. So, not only is high confidentiality in-grained into the whole system but if anyone makes the unusual step of enquiring about the holder of an account, not only will/can the client be informed immediately but may have requested capital flight protection from their banker.

Thus, there is no (easy) way to find out about the specific assets and indeed even the holder of these types of account in these jurisdictions (entities who may in turn be off-the-shelf front companies in other jurisdictions). This is one of the reasons why they are sometimes called "secrecy jurisdictions".

In (very) recent times, the US has forced Switzerland to enter into bilateral agreements to reveal the details of account holders, notably if they can be proven to belong to individual US citizens. But several other jurisdictions have aped the Swiss model and/or operate outside of US-sphere of influence.

An excellent general book on the topic from a jurisdiction perspective ( it only touches on private banking) is Nicholas Shaxson's "Treasure Islands: Tax Havens and the Men who Stole the World" - highly recommended.

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WTF?

US 'Justice' arse backwards

Most jurisdictions put an alleged offender on trial first, then apply penalties.

If you think the money is going back to the suckers, think again. The US Government has an insatiable appetite for money.

Ask the international drug cartels.

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Thumb Down

Guilty until proven...

Oh wait, you don't even get a trial to prove your innocence.

Again the US does whatever the F it wants.

No trial, probably no actual proof given. They just take 100mil out of a bank account in another country and thats that.

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