- A fraudster who used Bitcoin to try and cover his tracks after stealing $10 million worth of digital value items from Microsoft has been jailed for nine years
- Volodymyr Kvashuk abused his position to steal gifts cards and the like and sell them online, amassing the huge haul over seven months
- He also tried to use a Bitcoin mixing service to obscure $2.8 million worth of the funds
A software engineer who defrauded Microsoft out of $10 million and used Bitcoin to try and cover his tracks has been jailed for nine years. Volodymyr Kvashuk stole millions of dollars’ worth of “currency stored value”, a term that covers gift cards and the like, over a seven-month period while working for the software giant and sold them online. Kvashuk used Bitcoin mixing services in order to try and obfuscate some $2.8 million of his gains, claiming that it was a gift from a relative.
$2.8 Million Sent Through Bitcoin Mixing Service
Kvashuk was hired by Microsoft to work on its online retail sales platform, a position he used to steal the gift cards and other such money alternatives, which he resold online. The seven-month spree began with smaller thefts totaling $12,000 before he upped the stakes massively, stealing and reselling $10 million worth of the digital assets.
Approximately $2.8 million of Kvashuk’s haul was converted into Bitcoin and then sent to a Bitcoin mixing service before making its way into his bank account, with the criminal seemingly unaware that the activity could still be traced to him. He used his newfound fortune to buy a number of luxuries, such as a $1.6 million lakefront home and a $160,000 Tesla car.
Kvashuk Convicted on 18 Counts
To compound his crimes, Kvashuk filed fake tax returns that obscured his income, claiming the Bitcoin had been a gift from a relative. Unsurprisingly, Microsoft noticed the fact that $10 million in currency assets had gone missing and called the authorities, who launched an investigation and narrowed it down to Kvashuk.
Kvashuk was convicted of a stunning 18 federal violations and will spend nine years in prison as well as paying $8.34 million in damages. He also faces deportation from the U.S. once his prison term is completed.