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SEC charges trader with hacking into accounts

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January 26, 2012 08:42 PM EST | AP


WASHINGTON — Federal regulators have filed civil charges against a trader in Latvia whom they accuse of hacking into U.S. customers' online brokerage accounts and driving prices of more than 100 stocks up or down by making unauthorized trades.

The Securities and Exchange Commission announced charges Thursday against Igors Nagaicevs, a 34-year old Latvian citizen. The SEC also accused four online trading firms and eight executives of the firms of enabling Nagaicevs' scheme by allowing him anonymous access to the markets. Nagaicevs couldn't be located for comment.

The SEC said the scheme, allegedly conducted from June 2009 to August 2010, caused customer losses of more than $2 million, which were reimbursed by the firms. It netted Nagaicevs about $850,000 in illegal profits, the agency said. It is seeking unspecified fines and restitution.