Spanish authorities arrested a Russian hacker over the weekend at the request of the United States government, based on a warrant citing allegations his activities were "linked to Trump's election win."
A Russian hacker, Pyotr Levashov, was arrested in Spain on an international computer crimes warrant issued by the United States. Initially, the Department of Justice claimed the arrest was not related to national security issues. However, in an interview with Russian state media, Levashov's wife, Mary, said her husband told her the warrant he read talked about "the fact that the virus my husband allegedly created was related to Trump's victory in the elections."
According to the cyber security site Krebs on Security, Levashov was known in hacker circles as both "Peter Severa" and "Peter the Great" (Pyotr is Russian for "Peter") and is "a pivotal figure in many Russian-language cybercrime forums." Acting as a moderator on various online forums for hackers, Levashov reportedly served "as the virtual linchpin connecting virus writers with huge spam networks — including some that Severa allegedly created and sold himself."
A spokesperson for Spain's National Court said the arrest took place on Friday night in Barcelona where Levashov and his wife were vacationing. Levashov remains in custody in Spain at this time. No information about the status of his extradition to the U.S. is yet available.
As the media focuses on Trump's ineffective strike in Syria, this arrest is a critical reminder that we must stay focused on getting to the truth of Trump's possible collusion with Russia to win the White House.
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