Justice Department Announces Court-Authorized Disruption of Botnet Controlled by the Russian Federation’s Main Intelligence Directorate (GRU)
PITTSBURGH – Khaled Miah, 28, a former resident of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and former student at the University of Pittsburgh, has been found guilty by a federal jury after deliberating for three hours of five counts of making interstate threatening communications, one count of influencing, impeding or retaliating against a Federal law enforcement officer, and one count of destruction of records in a federal investigation, United States Attorney Cindy K. Chung announced today.
The jury found that from on or about December 27, 2020 through on or about December 31, 2020, Miah posted threats directed at individual FBI agents who were investigating him, as well as the FBI generally. In December 2020, FBI personnel identified a publicly visible Twitter account created by Miah. From the date of its creation to on or about January 1, 2021, Miah used this Twitter account to threaten, intimidate and harass FBI Pittsburgh Agents and the FBI. In addition, after posting the threatening statements, and with full knowledge of the FBI investigation into his conduct, Miah subsequently deleted those posts which impeded, obstructed, and influenced the FBI investigation. The trial lasted approximately two weeks and was before Judge W. Scott Hardy.
Judge Hardy scheduled sentencing for April 21, 2022 at 10 a.m. The law provides for a maximum total sentence of 20 years in prison, a fine of $250,000, or both. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed would be based upon the seriousness of the offenses and the prior criminal history, if any, of the defendant.
Members of the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force who were directly involved in this investigation include: FBI and the University of Pittsburgh Police Department.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Jessica Lieber Smolar and Nicole Ann Stockey of the Western District of Pennsylvania and Department of Justice Trial Attorney Dmitriy Slavin.