In September 2020, the Israeli Gal Barak was sentenced in the Vienna Cybercrime Trials (VCT) to four years in prison for investment fraud and money laundering. The millions of euros seized will be paid out to the victims eventually because the Austrian court is very slow in this regard. Gal Barak should also be charged in Germany but has appealed against it. The case is currently before the European Court of Justice. His co-conspirator, Israeli Tal Jacki Fitelzon, on the other hand, has now been indicted in Germany where he was previously in pre-trial detention.
Tal Jacki Fitelzon is charged by German prosecutors led by Chief Prosecutor Nino Goldbeck to participate in the cybercrime organization E&G Bulgaria. This organization operated broker scams XtraderFX, SafeMarkets, or OptionStarsGlobal, among others. Fitelzon was “Vice President Sales” and responsible for the day-to-day operations of Barak’s boiler rooms. The prosecution wants to send Fitelzon to jail for this. We will be watching and reporting on the trial.
In the German indictment, the prosecutor refers to 365 victims of the E&G Bulgaria scams. This is only a small fraction of the actual victims. A former partner of Gal Barak speaks of more than 50,000 victims worldwide and more than €200M stolen funds.
More indictments will follow around E&G Bulgaria. If the European Court of Justice allows the charges against Gal Barak, he will probably also be sentenced in Germany to several years in prison, according to the lawyers’ opinion. It is not yet clear when the European Court of Justice will rule. It may still take many months. It will definitely be a precedent and a landmark decision in the fight against cybercrime in the EU.