Lithuanian man pleads guilty to stealing $176 million from Facebook, Google

Lithuanian man pleads guilty to stealing $176 million from Facebook, Google
Photo credit: Getty.

A Lithuanian man who stole NZ$176 million (US$122m) from Facebook and Google through fake invoices has pleaded guilty in a New York court.

Elvadas Rimasauskas, 50, wired money from fake invoices paid out to him, to bank accounts around the world.

He was extradited to the US to face charges over the fraud, with US Attorney Geoffrey S Berman saying in a statement the man couldn't hide from the law.

"Rimasauskas thought he could hide behind a computer screen halfway across the world while he conducted his fraudulent scheme, but he has learned the arms of American justice are long and he now faces significant time in a US prison."

From 2013 to 2015 Rimasauskas registered a company in Latvia bearing the same name as an Asian-based computer hardware manufacturer, sending fake invoices to companies, which were "regularly multi-million dollar transactions".

The indictment said he made various accounts at banks in Latvia and Cyprus, where the funds were siphoned.

"The scheme succeeded in deceiving the victim companies into complying with the fraudulent wiring instructions," it read.

Rimasauskas was arrested in March 2017 by Lithuanian authorities and was extradited to New York in August of the same year.

He faces a maximum sentence of 30 years behind bars.

Newshub.

Contact Newshub with your story tips:
news@newshub.co.nz