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Taiwanese court sentences 3 foreigners to 5 years in prison in cyberheist case

A Taiwanese court sentenced three eastern Europeans to five years in prison for their involvement in a US$2.6 million cyberheist from First Commercial Bank Co. Ltd.'s ATM network, Agence France-Presse reported Jan. 25.

The foreigners, Andrejs Peregudovs from Latvia, Mihail Colibaba from Romania and Niklae Penkov from Moldova, were also each fined NT$600,000 and will be deported after completing their sentences. The police arrested them in July 2016 and recovered more than half of the stolen money.

First Commercial Bank lost approximately NT$70 million in July 2016 in the ATM heist, when withdrawals took place at various times from dozens of machines in three cities. The suspects had uncovered a loophole in a server at the bank's London branch office and used it to plant the malware.

Peregudovs, Colibaba and Penkov can appeal the ruling.

As of Jan. 24, US$1 was equivalent to NT$31.35.