World's "most prolific" bank card broker busted in France, says U.S.: but his promo cartoon lives on

This Department of Justice press release reports the arrest in France of an alleged old-timer in the international "carding" community. US Secret Service agents contacted him over ICQ, and arranged to buy more than 70 credit card numbers from him. He will soon be extradited to America.

Snip from Kim Zetter's related story at Wired News:

Vladislav Anatolievich Horohorin, 27, aka BadB, holds dual-citizenship in Ukraine and Israel and was one of the earliest members of CarderPlanet, a first of its kind Russian-language carding forum that was launched around 2002 by a group of East Europeans. CarderPlanet was shuttered in 2004, and BadB had more recently been selling his stolen goods at and on his own websites, and, where he promoted his product in lighthearted Flash cartoons like the one above.

Authorities say the network created by Horohorin and other CarderPlanet veterans is linked to "nearly every major intrusion of financial information reported to the international law enforcement community."

Above, BadB's animated calling card. He faces up to 10 years in prison if convicted of access-device fraud and two years if found guilty of aggravated identity theft. Read the full Wired News item here: Alleged Carder 'BadB' Busted in France. Related reports: Reuters, AP, Bloomberg.



  1. I hope he gets more than 10 years.

    If you rob people you should stay in prison until you can make your victims whole.

    1. Feh, the banks pay for credit card fraud. I’m not saying its a victimless crime, but we aren’t talking about rape here.

      The U.S. has 1/4 of the world’s prison population, which is absurd, and I say we don’t need to make it worse by imprisoning people for massive chunks of their lives for non violent crimes.

      1. Credit card fraud is like stealing every cent the person owns, as well as a ton of money they don’t and then destroying their reputation and credibility.

        I can’t even begin to conceive of how you could think it’s no big deal unless it’s never happened to you or you’ve done it to someone else.

        1. So why would you want to pay even more money to keep them in prison? Unless you own stock in Halliburton, imprisoning a large segment of the population for non-violent crimes just empties your wallet.

          1. The idea is to punish criminal acts, and deter others from committing them.
            Is the system perfect? (insert rant here).
            But that’s the idea. The notion that only violent crime merits imprisonment is ludicrous.

  2. Whenever we have posts about this kind of thing, we actually get spam from people selling card skimmers. Yay entrepreneurship!

    1. I still maintain my ICQ account for old times’ sake. The only thing I ever get from it is the occasional fake friend request containing spam for Russian hacker sites. (If I spoke Russian I could elaborate more, but sadly Digsby doesn’t let you copy text out of the dialog box, so I can’t translate it.)

    1. I’ll be tempted to believe that’s a bad thing when filesharing is no longer a crime punishable in civil court.

  3. Lobster and wrybread, the distinction your making is between two extremes:

    1. Someone steals your credit card. You spend thousands of dollars and hundreds of hours of your life settling debts and proving that you are who you say you are. False charges come back to haunt you years later when you discover someone’s records, somewhere, weren’t really corrected.

    2. Someone steals your credit card. They buy something obviously out of your normal purchase patterns and geography. The credit card company calls you and asks if you made the purchase. You say, “No.” You get a new credit card number.

    I’ve heard stories of both outcomes. One is less of a problem to the card using individual than the other, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t a big deal either way. It’s still fraud/stealing.

    1. My credit card number was stolen last month, and I had something closer to experience #2, but I was still a hassle, so I hope he gets the max. Sure, it costs money to keep him in prison, but it obviously costs lots of people lots of money to have him running around loose. Prison has multiple purposes: prevention, punishment, deterrence, and rehabilitation. It’s pretty bad at rehabilitation, but it’s pretty good at the other three.

      1. Anyway, French law forbids extradition of French citizens by France. So, had this guy been French, he would have been judged in France.

  4. Yeah, It costs money to keep people like him in prison, but I like to think of it as insurance payments.

  5. Um, I’m a bit surprised to find out that some people thing that banks will somehow magically fix your credit and restore your funds. Guess what? Those protections vary from state to state and only cover personal accounts. If you have a business debit card and someone steals your money there is no guarantee that you’ll ever get your money back.

    So is prison only for nonviolent offenders? Okay. Why don’t you just settle in with con artists, child porn purchasers, embezzlers, thieves, repeat DUI offenders, industrial polluters, Enron execs, recording industry lawyers, dirty cops, sex traffickers, weapons smugglers, and televangelists.

    Some of these things can be violent or lead to violence, but its easy to defend yourself of these things by claiming non-violent innocence. It’s astonishing that some people like that the only non-violent crimes are pot smoking and CC stealing.

  6. “The notion that only violent crime merits imprisonment is ludicrous. ”

    I would love to have thieves working on sweatshops*, instead i’m paying for their food with my taxes.

    So I kinda like the idea of isolation for violence, and forced labor until you pay what you stole plus a fine for theft.

    *You don’t actually have to make the sweatshop nasty, with whipping and stuff like that.

    1. “I would love to have thieves working on sweatshops*, instead i’m paying for their food with my taxes.”

      No. Google “Federal Prison Industries”.

      One reason we have so many “non-violent” criminal offenses and such long prison terms is that prisoners are in fact a source of very cheap domestic labor.

  7. > The notion that only violent crime merits imprisonment is ludicrous.

    What about the notion that only violent crime merits super crazy insane long-ass prison terms?

    1. The punishment should be proportional to how much it hurts an individual times how many individuals it hurts. (Also, crimes that are hard to detect usually get harsher punishments than crimes that are easy to detect, because those crimes need more deterence.)

      Attempted murder is much, much worse than stealing someone’s money. But, hurting 1000 people (a number that I just made up) is much, much worse than hurting one person. Is trying to kill one person better or worse than stealing from 1000? I don’t know, but it might be. 1000 is a pretty big number!

  8. Credit Card fraud is a serious crime. It kind of makes me sick that this guy will serve at most 12 years, and there are people in jail for longer than that, just because they have a substance abuse problem.

  9. If only he had gotten a job as an executive at one of the banks he could have taken all that money “legally”.

  10. He doesn’t need Prison.

    I say we dig a large deep hole, toss him in and let him rot.

    Getting ripped off this way can absolutely disable a life for years. It’s just brutal.

    F*%k this pile of human garbage and anyone who thinks it’s not a big deal.

  11. And f*%k you right back!

    I still think bashing someone on the head to take their money is way worse than stealing their credit card numbers, even a million of them, and anyone who incorrectly capitalizes “prison” is unlikely to convince me otherwise.

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