Five Arrested in $27 Million Crypto Scam Targeting 3,200 Victims in Thailand
Thai authorities have apprehended five foreign nationals connected to a fraudulent cryptocurrency investment platform responsible for defrauding over $27 million from local investors. The elaborate scheme duped more than 3,200 individuals, and the Cyber Crime Investigation Bureau (CCIB) in Thailand took swift action to apprehend those responsible.
The CCIB's investigation was initiated after affected investors came forward in late 2022, reporting substantial losses incurred through investments made on bchgloballtd.com. The investigation was conducted in collaboration with the United States Homeland Security Investigations and other international law enforcement agencies.
The five individuals accused of orchestrating the scam include four from China and one from Laos. They have been arrested and face charges related to colluding in transnational crime, perpetrating public fraud, and engaging in money laundering.
In August 2022, the Office of the Attorney General in Thailand initiated prosecution proceedings against the suspects. Additionally, the anti-money laundering office in Thailand seized personal property valued at 585 million baht from the accused individuals.
CCIB spokesperson Kissana Phathanacharoen highlighted that investment schemes continue to be a significant source of financial damage through scams reported in Thailand. Victims often invest their life savings or take out loans against their homes and properties, hoping for lucrative returns.
To address such fraudulent activities, Thailand's Securities and Exchange Commission implemented new requirements in January 2023 for virtual asset service providers operating in the country. These regulations aim to enhance investor protection and safeguard user funds held by custody providers.
As reported in a recent Cointelegraph investigation, scammers have become increasingly sophisticated, even targeting MetaMask users by employing government-owned website URLs to deceive victims and gain access to their cryptocurrency wallet holdings.
The arrests of those involved in this $27 million crypto scam serve as a reminder of the importance of due diligence and caution when engaging in cryptocurrency investments, particularly in an environment where fraudulent schemes can prey on unsuspecting individuals.