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US payroll, financial firms hacked; 8 charged



NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — U.S. prosecutors in New Jersey have announced charges against eight alleged members of an international cybercrime ring they say hacked into the computers of more than a dozen leading financial institutions and the U.S. military’s payroll service.

Prosecutors say the scheme to steal millions of dollars from customer accounts was led by Oleksiy Sharapka of Kiev, Ukraine. He was deported from the U.S. in 2012 after serving time in federal prison.

U.S. Attorney Paul Fishman says those arrested include key associates in New York, Massachusetts and Georgia accused of using stolen identities to try to cash out the hacked accounts.

Four of the eight were arrested this week. Two appeared in court in Newark and one in Boston. A fourth man fell ill and is hospitalized.