A Brazilian man has been indicted by a New Orleans federal grand jury for conspiring to broker the sale of a botnet, US Department of Justice prosecutors have announced.
For his role in a botnet cybercrime scheme, Leni de Abreu Neto, 35, of Taubate, Brazil was charged with one count of conspiracy to damage computers worldwide. The US indictment alleges that more than 100,000 computers were hijacked by botnet software and damaged.
A botnet is a collection of computers that have been surreptitiously subverted by criminal hackers through infection with malicious software, unbeknown to their legitimate owners.
The hijacked computers – which are called "zombies" or "robots" – are typically instructed by their shadowy controllers to then infect additional systems and mount denial-of-service attacks supporting blackmail of targeted websites or participate in spam email campaigns.
The indictment charges that Neto's unindicted co-conspirator Nordin Nasiri, 19, of Sneek, Netherlands created an illegal botnet in May, 2008, and that Neto used the botnet and paid for the servers that controlled the botnet. It further alleges that Neto agreed with Nasiri to rent out the botnet to others and then finally to broker the sale of the botnet for €25,000 or about $37,000.
Neto had his collar felt by the Dutch plod on July 29 and is being held in a Netherlands jail pending extradition. The Dutch coppers also caught up with the bot herder Nasiri and he's being prosecuted in the Netherlands.
Neto's looking at spending up to five years inside at Club Fed and a fine of up to $250,000.
Brazilian indicted for botnet conspiracy
By Egan Orion on Aug 25, 2008 7:49AM