Law enforcement authorities arrested four people in Israel and Florida and revealed a complex securities fraud scheme tied to the computer hacks of JPMorgan Chase & Co. and other financial institutions.
Officials said a fifth person remains at large.
The morning arrests are the culmination of a months-long investigation of several friends who met more than a decade ago at Florida State University and are linked by an FBI memo to one of the largest U.S. bank hacks in history one that JPMorgan officials argued initially was the work of the Russian government.
Behind the indictment unsealed today is a remarkable story of unpredictable alliances in modern computer crime tying two former college buddies to a multi-layered criminal organization with tentacles reaching Moscow, Tel Aviv and West Palm Beach.
In the indictment, one of the friends now living in Israel and another person are charged with securities fraud in a plan to pump up the value of low-volume stocks.
Two people arrested in Florida are charged with running an unlicensed money-remitting business related to the scheme.