AUSTIN (KXAN) — An Austin man was sentenced to prison and supervised release for his role in wire fraud and buying stolen online payment accounts, the U.S. Department of Justice said Wednesday.

Marcos Ponce, 37, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud in October 2021, but according to the DOJ, a group he was part of bought more than 38,000 stolen PayPal account credentials from November 2015 to November 2018.

He was sentenced to five years in federal prison followed by three years of supervised release. Ponce also must pay $1.4 million in restitution.

The DOJ said the people in Ponce’s group “worked together to establish buyer accounts on a particular illegal online marketplace,” for compromised online accounts that included personally-identifying information. It also said his group, “developed social engineering techniques in order to trick unwitting third parties into accepting money transfers from the compromised PayPal accounts, and then transferring the money into accounts controlled by members of the conspiracy.”

The FBI’s Washington field office, along with the FBI’s San Antonio-Austin Cyber Task Force, investigated the case.

“Today’s sentencing sends a message that the FBI will pursue cybercriminals across the globe. Hiding behind a computer does not mean you can stay anonymous or out of reach of law enforcement,” said Steve M. D’Antuono, the assistant director in charge of the FBI’s Washington field office. “With the assistance of FBI cyber task forces across the country, the FBI will diligently and aggressively work to identify and locate criminals, regardless of where they operate.”