LONDON, KY - The U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Kentucky is reporting that a Somerset, Ky., man, Jesse Kipf, 38, has been indicted by a federal grand jury sitting in London, on five counts of computer fraud, three counts of aggravated identity theft, and two counts of making false statements on applications in connection with federally insured financial institutions.
The indictment alleges that Kipf intentionally accessed a computer without authorization and then obtained information from a protected computer for his own private gain and in furtherance of identity theft. According to the indictment, Kipf illegally accessed the following websites: State of Arizona, State of Hawaii, GuestTek Interactive Entertainment, Ltd., State of Vermont, and Milestone, Inc. GuestTek Interactive Entertainment and Milestone are vendors of large hotel chains; but at this time, investigators have no evidence that hotel customer personal identifying information was compromised.
The indictment also alleges that Kipf knowingly and unlawfully used the identification of three different persons to commit wire fraud and computer fraud. Kipf is also alleged to have made false statements to federally insured corporations, in order to open credit accounts.
Carlton S. Shier, IV, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Kentucky; Michael E. Stansbury, Special Agent in Charge, FBI Louisville Field Division; Daniel Cameron, Attorney General of Kentucky; Anna E. Lopez, Attorney General for Hawaii; and Bobby Jones, Pulaski County Sheriff, jointly announced the indictment.
The investigation preceding the indictment was conducted by FBI Louisville, Kentucky Attorney General’s Office, Department of the Attorney General for Hawaii, and the Pulaski County Sheriff’s Office. The indictment was presented to the grand jury by Assistant U.S. Attorney Kathryn Dieruf.
Kipf appeared for his initial appearance on November 9, 2023, and a jury trial is currently set for January 17, 2024, at 8:30 a.m., in London. For each of the computer fraud charges, Kipf faces up to five years in prison; for each of the identity theft charges, he faces up to two years in prison; and for the bank fraud charges, he faces a maximum of 30 years in prison. However, any sentence following a conviction would be imposed by the Court, after its consideration of the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and the federal sentencing statutes.
Individuals believing they may be victims of the cyber intrusion scheme described herein are encouraged to visit the following website to obtain more information: https://justice.gov/usao-edky/information-victims-large-cases.
Tips on how to protect yourself and your personal information against cybercrime can be found by clicking here and on the FBI Cyber Division’s website.
Any indictment is an accusation only. A defendant is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial at which government must prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
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