Russian man pleads guilty in global computer fraud case

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MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — A Russian man has pleaded guilty in Minnesota in connection with a global computer fraud case.

Forty-one-year-old Maxim Senakh, of Velikii Novgorod, Russia, pleaded guilty Tuesday in federal court to conspiracy to violate the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act and wire fraud.

Authorities say Senakh and his associates installed malware on tens of thousands of computer servers worldwide to generate fraudulent payments for themselves. Among other things, the malware was used in spam email schemes — generating millions in revenue.

Senakh was indicted in 2015, arrested by Finnish authorities and extradited to the U.S. to face charges.

Minneapolis FBI spokesman Craig Lisher says the case was handled in Minnesota because the agency’s cyber investigators were searching for threats and found that Senakh was victimizing Minnesota citizens.