[ISN] Romanian Indicted in Hacking Scheme

InfoSec News isn at c4i.org
Mon Aug 9 08:46:04 EDT 2004


Associated Press
August 6, 2004 

A Romanian man has been indicted by a grand jury that charged him and
five Americans with a $10-million scheme to steal goods from a
computer equipment distributor.

The indictment returned Wednesday accuses Calin Mateias, 24, of
Bucharest, of hacking into the online ordering system of Santa
Ana-based Ingram Micro Inc. and posing as a legitimate customer to
place more than 2,000 orders over four years.

Computers and equipment were shipped to Romania or to people in the
U.S. who had been recruited in Internet chat rooms to send the
equipment or the proceeds from its sale to Mateias, the indictment

"It's larger than your average computer hacking case. It's a lot more
damage," said Assistant U.S. Atty. Wesley Hu.

Mateias, who was charged with conspiracy and 13 counts of mail fraud,
is in Romania and is not in custody, officials said.

The U.S. attorney's office in Los Angeles said the Justice Department
was working with Romanian authorities to "ensure Mateias is brought to
justice, whether in Romania or the United States."

Also charged with mail fraud are Olufemi Tinubu, 21, and Tarion
Finley, 20, of Atlanta; Valeriu Crisovan, 27, of Hallandale, Fla.;  
Jeremy Long, 28, of Richmond, Va.; and Warren Bailey, 21, of

Each will be issued a summons to appear this month in federal court in
Los Angeles.

Authorities searched Mateias' home in Romania in April, but
prosecutors declined to say what was found. They also would not say
how they believe he hacked into the online ordering system of Ingram
Micro, a wholesale computer and equipment company.

A spokeswoman for the company — the world's largest computer equipment
distributor, with $22.6 billion in sales last year — did not return
phone calls seeking comment.

Mateias, who faces a maximum of 90 years in prison if convicted on all
counts, has long been known as a computer hacker who uses the
pseudonyms "Dr. Mengele" and "Metal."

Authorities allege that Mateias hacked into Ingram Micro's online
ordering system in 1999. The company blocked shipments to Romania, so
he recruited Americans to accept the merchandise, officials say.

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