May 11, 2017 / 1:53 PM / 2 years ago

Czech court adjourns hearing on Russian hacking suspect wanted by U.S, Russia

PRAGUE (Reuters) - A Czech court adjourned a hearing on Thursday in an extradition tug of war over Russian citizen Yevgeniy Nikulin, whom the United States want to try for hacking social networks including LinkedIn and whom Russia accuses of a minor cyber theft.

Prague Municipal Court judge Jaroslav Pytloun said he adjourned the hearing for May 30 after the defense said it had not received all the documents it had asked for.

Czech police arrested Nikulin on Oct. 5 last year on an Interpol warrant after the United States requested his extradition.

A U.S. federal grand jury in California indicted the 29-year-old the same month on suspicion of hacking into the U.S.-based social media companies LinkedIn, Dropbox and Formspring in 2012.

LinkedIn has said the case was related to a 2012 breach at the social networking company that it previously said may have compromised the credentials of 100 million users, prompting it to launch a massive password reset operation.

Russia later also sought Nikulin’s extradition after a Moscow court issued a warrant for his arrest on Nov. 10 for the alleged theft of $3,450 via Webmoney in 2009, the Czech Justice Ministry said in November.

If the Prague Municipal Court, or a higher court on appeal, allows the extradition to either country, a final decision on whether it will go ahead lies with Justice Minister Robert Pelikan.

The Czech police arrested Nikulin just two days before Washington formally accused Moscow of a campaign of cyber attacks against Democratic Party organizations ahead of the 2016 U.S. presidential election. No connection has been made between the cases, however.

Reporting by Robert Muller; Editing by Hugh Lawson

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