Tesla hacker to be deported after pleading guilty to ransomware plot against Giga Nevada

Tesla Gigafactory 1, where Model 3 battery cells are produced. (Photo: Tesla)

Russian Tesla hacker Egor Igorevich Kriuchkov will be deported from the United States after being sentenced on Monday to time already served. In March, Kruichkov pleaded guilty to a cybersecurity attack on Tesla’s Gigafactory Nevada in Reno. 

Kriuchkov appeared on a video conference from jail recently and apologized for his involvement with the ransomware plot on Tesla.

“I’m sorry for my decision. I regret it,” he said through a court interpreter. According to The Seattle Times, the Tesla hacker is fluent in English, but U.S. District Judge Miranda Du in Reno provided Kriuchkov with an interpreter anyway. 

The Russian hacker said his time in U.S. custody made him reflect on the pain he caused this family in Russia and the damage it caused to his reputation. Some of Kriuchkov’s family members sent emails to the judge asking for leniency. 

“I understand it was a bad decision,” Kriuchkov said. He apologized after Judge Du acknowledged that the cybersecurity attack was not successful and did not compromise the company network. The judge also noted that Kriuchkov offered to pay an unidentified Tesla employee $500,000 to help with the ransomware plot. 

Previous reports noted that Kriuchkov and his peers involved with the cybersecurity attack planned to offer a $1 million incentive to a Giga Nevada employee who would help initiate the cyberattack against Tesla. The Tesla worker did not accept the bribe and instead chose to report the ransomware plot to the FBI. Kriuchkov was later apprehended in Los Angeles as he was trying to flee the country. 

The judge went along with a plea agreement reached between prosecutors and Kriuchkov, who was sentenced to 10 months in custody for his guilty plea in March. The Russian hacker must also pay about $14,825 in restitution for the time Tesla spent investigating the cybersecurity attack and turning the case over to the FBI. If he remains in the United States or returns from abroad, Kriuchkov will be under federal supervision for three years. He will remain in custody until he leaves the United States.

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Tesla hacker to be deported after pleading guilty to ransomware plot against Giga Nevada
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