Scammers have officially taken their talents to new heights in one of the boldest scams of our time!
A Lithuanian man, Evaldas Rimasauskas, pled guilty to charges of United States wire fraud, aggravated identity theft, and money laundering. He topped of his list of charges by admitting to stealing $23 million from Google and $99 million from Facebook between 2013 and 2015.
Rimasauskas got off with all that money, in fact, with little to no effort at all. He managed to get the scam to work successfully by sending Google and Facebook bogus invoices. The invoices were for items that were never purchased to begin with! The invoices were accompanied by “forged invoices, contracts, and letters that falsely appeared to have been executed and signed by executives and agents of the Victim Companies, and which bore false corporate stamps embossed with the Victim Companies’ names, to be submitted to banks in support of the large volume of funds that were fraudulently transmitted via wire transfer.”
Rimasauskas also sent fraudulent emails that appeared to come from corporate executives.
The real gag is no one checked first to see if the invoices were real! He pretended he was a huge Taiwanese hardware manufacturer, Quanta Computer Inc., and billed from everything to parts, services, and even tech support!
He has agreed to forfeit about $50 million. It’s not clear what he will do with the other $73 million or why he’s only been asked to give back less than half of the money he stole. Rimasauskas was a prolific and baroque money-launderer who has stashed cash away in Cyprus, Lithuania, Hungary, Slovakia, and Latvia.
Google has said that “We detected this fraud and promptly alerted the authorities. We recouped the funds and we’re pleased this matter is resolved.”
Evaldas Rimasauskas is facing up to 30 years if convicted.