William E. Fitzpatrick, Acting U.S. Attorney, said that a Pakistani national will serve four years in jail for obtaining illegally over $19.6 Mn as part of a telephone and international hacking scheme.
Fitzpatrick said that 49 year old Muhammad Sohail Qasmani collected illegally proceeds from hacking operation which made unlimited long distance calls from unused phone extensions of companies which were ultimately paid by the companies. He pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit fraud through wire. The man worked for a hacking crew which attacked companies of US by hacking their PBX systems.
A federal judge in New Jersey sentenced him for four years in prison along with two years of supervised release on Wednesday. Nj.com posted on June 29th, 2017, stating that the scheme racked up over $70 Mn in losses and it was led by 55 year old Noor Aziz who is still being hunted by the FBI.
As per the court documents, under this scheme, hackers targeted internal phone services of U.S. corporations, placing calls to those systems to find unused telephone extensions. Authorities said that those extensions were then used for making calls to adult entertainment services, psychic hotlines and long distance calls generating revenue which was created on the duration of the calls. Prosecutors say that he collected money illegally through a scheme where hackers reprogrammed unused telephone extensions from businesses to make calls to premium telephone numbers.
Authorities said that Oasmani opened bank accounts to collect money illegally and paid the hackers who were part of the operation. He transferred money to at least 10 countries during last four years. Prosecutors confirm that the Pakistani ran the scheme and remains elusive.
He was asked to pay almost $72 Mn in compensation. Oasmani pleaded guilty for collecting money illegally from around 650 people of at least 10 countries. While Oasmani will be sentenced in May, Aziz is still absconding but currently exists in the Most Wanted list of FBI.
Prosecutors confirm that the Pakistani man ran the scheme and remains elusive. According to updated information from prosecutors, this story has been corrected to show that Oasmani was imprisoned for four years but not more than four years.