Maximilian Rivkin, 39, has been accused of drug trafficking, money laundering, murder conspiracy and other violent acts. Photo courtesy of FBI
June 8 (UPI) -- The United States is offering a $5 million reward for information that leads to the arrest and conviction of a Swedish man involved in transnational organized crime.
Authorities have been hunting for Maximilian Rivkin since at least June of 2021 when more than 800 people were arrested worldwide in a two-day takedown targeting organized crime, drug trafficking and money laundering operations conducted via the ANOM network of encrypted devices.
Rivkin has been charged in both the United States and Sweden, with the U.S. indictment accusing him of being an ANOM network administrator and a so-called influencer, who are described in the charging document as "well-known crime figures who wield significant power and influence over other criminal associates."
The U.S. State Department with Swedish authorities announced the reward Wednesday, saying Rivkin's communications on the ANOM platform implicate him in drug trafficking, money laundering, murder conspiracy and other violent acts.
It was unclear where he remains at large, but the U.S. charging document unsealed in May 2021 said he is a Swedish citizen who resides in Turkey. The FBI describes him as 6 feet, 1 inches tall with a tattoo of three monkeys on his right arm and scars on the fingers of his right hand and one on his left knee.
Rivkin was identified in the three-year operation Trojan Shield that targeted organized crime through the FBI-created ANOM encrypted device company, which was promoted to criminals.
More than 12,000 ANOM devices were sold to more than 300 criminal syndicates operating in 100 countries.
ANOM users discussed drug deals, money laundering and narcotic shipments and concealment methods, among other such crimes, on the device. In total, more than 27 million ANOM messages were catalogued by the FBI.
Rivkin is accused of being a network administrator on ANOM who can initiate new subscriptions to the platform, set up access for distributors, remove accounts and remotely delete and reset devices.
"This joint reward offer reinforces the U.S. efforts to disrupt and deter transnational criminal activity globally and to build a global coalition to address synthetic drug threats," the State Department said in a statement Wednesday.
"Transnational organized crime and illicit drug trafficking threatens economic prosperity and challenges the stability of governments and societies around the world."