Guilty Verdict Issued in First RICO Cybercrime Case

Man Charged with RICO Cybercrimes Over the Internet Ruled Guilty

RICO CybercrimeA young man from Arizona was arrested for RICO crimes involving identity theft, and is the first person in the US to be found guilty of cybercrime using federal racketeering legislation.

David Ray Camez, 22, was convicted by a federal jury in Las Vegas on Friday, December 6th, under the Racketeering and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO). The verdict came after a three-week trial, in which Camez was charged for identity theft under RICO laws for stealing identities through his website.

This is the first time a cybercrime has been prosecuted using RICO laws.

Camez was reportedly already serving a 7 year sentence for state-level fraud charges when federal authorities arrested him. The main question during his trial was whether or not his website, through which he did business, constituted an organized criminal enterprise.

The jury’s decision has much larger implications for identity thieves and “deep web” sites in the future, including the recently relaunched Silk Road, which notoriously used BitCoins to sell drugs, weapons, prostitutes, and thugs for hire across state lines. Since Camez, a “low-level crook with few assets,” was found guilty under RICO Laws, he is legally responsible for the crimes committed by each of his website’s 7,900 users. He used his website, Carder.su, to purchase stolen credit card information and counterfeiting equipment that he used in his fraud crimes. Vendors on Camez’s website were carefully screened, and sold a variety of illegal items and services like hacked data, hacker tools, counterfeiting equipment, and botnets for rent. The website has been compared to a criminal version of eBay, and required users like Camez to post reviews and keep vendors working.

The website was infiltrated by an undercover secret service agent, who used the vendor handle Celtic to sell manufactured fake IDs, provided by the Nevada DMV. The Secret Service then used the fake IDs over a period of four years to track patterns of illegal information across the globe. Four other federal grand jury indictments have been issued against 55 individuals in 10 different countries.

“It is difficult to fathom the enormity and complexity of the Carder.su racketeering organization and its far-reaching tentacles across international borders,” US attorney Daniel Bogden says in a statement. The “complexity” was enough for jurors to rule that the 5,500 user site was a criminal organization and fell into RICO territory

Camez faces up to 40 years in jail and a $250,000 fine for the guilty verdict on two counts of RICO violations.

The Strom Law Firm Defends RICO Cases

The RICO act is broad and covers a variety of white collar crimes including:

Given the possible consequences at stake, it is critical that you contact a RICO defense attorney who can protect your rights and provide you an aggressive and well planned defense.  Contact the criminal defense attorneys at the Strom Law Firm, LLC for a free consultation to discuss the facts of your case.

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