The international scammers were convicted of aggravated frauds and ID theft in a case with 423 Norwegian victims. Using technologically sophisticated and devious methods, the offenders attempted to defraud their unwitting victims of more than NOK 10 million. 

A new era for the fight against digital crime 
Økokrim opened a criminal investigation in response to a report submitted by the Norwegian Public Roads Administration. A thorough investigation resulted in a large-scale raid in Romania. 40 Romanian police officers participated in the raid, at Økrokrim’s request. Økokrim was also present. The convicted persons were arrested and extradited to Norway for prosecution. 

– Digital fraud is becoming more widespread and serious. The case marks a new era for the fight against digital crime. The police are getting better and better at investigating digital fraud and cross-border crime, says Police Prosecutor Jon Andre Hvoslef-Eide in Økokrim. 

Customised scam attempts 
The scammers targeted Norwegian users of the Public Roads Administration’s online self-service portal for buying and selling vehicles. The convicted persons used technologically sophisticated means to cover their online footprint. 

– We are seeing increasing levels of professionalism among criminals. They often use sophisticated means, such as ChatGPT or other AI tools, to customise their scams, says Hvoslef-Eide.

The conviction sends an important message
Through thorough investigation, international police cooperation and a successful working relationship with the business sector in Norway, the offenders were finally identified, arrested and convicted. 

– The conviction shows that it is possible to identify the offenders behind large-scale scam operations, no matter where they are operating from. Criminals targeting Norwegian nationals should not feel safe. The conviction sends an important message to criminal groups that the risk of detection is ever increasing and that they will face strict sentences, says Hvoslef-Eide.

Digital fraud is on the rise globally. Banks in Norway see a year-on-year increase of 40–50 per cent, in terms of attempted scams and amounts stolen. 
The judgment is not yet final.

Jon Andre Hvoslef-Eide
Police Prosecutor 
990 04522 
+47 23 29 10 30 (08:00–15:00)

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