US Justice Department charges 2 brothers with USD25M cryptocurrency theft in 12 Seconds

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(MENAFN) On Wednesday, the US Justice Department announced charges against two brothers, Anton Peraire-Bueno, 24, of Boston, and James Pepaire-Bueno, 28, of New York, for allegedly orchestrating a cryptocurrency theft totaling USD25 million in a remarkably brief span of approximately 12 seconds. The charges include conspiracy to commit wire fraud, wire fraud, and conspiracy to commit money laundering.

According to the Justice Department, the defendants exploited vulnerabilities in the Ethereum blockchain to fraudulently acquire USD25 million worth of cryptocurrency. The brothers were apprehended on Tuesday in Boston and New York and are scheduled to appear before US magistrate judges Paul G. Levenson in the District of Massachusetts and Valerie Figueredo in the Southern District of New York later on Wednesday.

Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco emphasized the sophisticated nature of the scheme, describing it as a meticulously planned and rapidly executed operation that utilized cutting-edge technology. She underscored the Justice Department’s commitment to combating fraud in cryptocurrency markets and supporting victims while restoring confidence in these evolving financial ecosystems.

US Attorney Damian Williams of the Southern District of New York highlighted the defendants’ educational background in computer science and math from a prestigious university, alleging that they leveraged their expertise to manipulate protocols relied upon by millions of Ethereum users worldwide. Williams emphasized the unprecedented nature of the scheme, asserting that it raises fundamental questions about the integrity of blockchain technology.

If found guilty, the Peraire-Bueno brothers could face a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison for each count, as per the US agency’s statement. The case underscores the growing challenges associated with cryptocurrency-related fraud and the ongoing efforts by law enforcement to address these issues and uphold the integrity of financial markets.

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