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District Attorney Hayes announces the arrests at a press conference in Seattle. (FBI Photo)

Three top members of an international cybercrime ring have been arrested, U.S. District Attorney Annette Hayes said Wednesday from her office in Seattle. The hackers are allegedly high-ranking members of FIN7, a group responsible for stealing more than 15 million credit card numbers from thousands of businesses across the country.

Hayes announced the arrests with FBI special agent Jay Tabb Jr. at a press conference in Seattle Wednesday. The Seattle Cyber Task Force of the FBI and Western Washington District Attorney’s office are spearheading an ongoing investigation into FIN7 because some of its first targets were in Seattle. The FBI has hundreds of agents working on the investigation nationwide.

The suspects are three Ukrainian nationals: Dmytro Fedorov, Fedir Hladyr, and Andrii Kolpakov. All three were arrested in Europe. Hladyr is detained in Seattle and awaiting trial. The other two are detained abroad and awaiting extradition to the United States.

“These hackers think they can hide behind keyboards in far away places and that they can escape the long arm of United States law,” Hayes said during the press conference. “I’m here to tell you, and I think this announcement makes clear, they cannot do that.”

Tabb said that suspects are not connected to the state-sponsored cyber attacks carried out by Russian agents during the 2016 presidential election. “This is good, old-fashioned organized crime,” Tabb said at the press conference.

Since 2015, FIN7 has engaged in a malware campaign that uses email phishing to collect credit card information from point-of-sale systems at businesses. The attacks primarily targeted the restaurant, gaming, and hospitality industries, according to the District Attorney’s office.

Each of the suspects will be charged with 26 felony counts alleging conspiracy, wire fraud, hacking, and other charges.

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