Jury convicts ex-Microsoft worker in digital currency scheme

The 25-year-old Ukrainian citizen helped test the company’s online retail sales platform.

Associated Press

SEATTLE — A jury on Tuesday convicted a former Microsoft worker of wire fraud and other charges in what prosecutors described as a scheme to steal $10 million in digital currency.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Seattle said 25-year-old Ukrainian citizen Volodymyr Kvashuk helped test Microsoft’s online retail sales platform.

He was accused of stealing digital currency, such as gift cards that could be redeemed for Microsoft products, then reselling them on the internet and using the proceeds to buy a $160,000 Tesla vehicle and a $1.7 million lakefront home.

He was fired in June 2018 after the scheme came to light. Prosecutors said that during the seven months of his activity, $2.8 million in Bitcoin was transferred into his bank accounts.

Following a five-day trial in federal court, Kvashuk was convicted of wire fraud, money laundering and aggravated identity theft, among other offenses.

He faces up to 20 years in prison when he is sentenced by U.S. District Judge James L. Robart in June.

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