Despite technological advancement, individuals continue to lose their cryptocurrencies. This is quite evident when a 22-year-old digital coin millionaire has been duped to lose over 5,500 bitcoins. This translates into approximately $352 million based on the latest price of $6,400 and there is no doubt that this is a huge amount by any standard. This has happened with an alleged scam in Thailand. Significantly, it has drawn attention from the public mainly because of the allegations of a Thai film actor involvement.
Duping Of Millionaire
A group of persons have approached Aarni Otava Saarima, a businessman from Finland, in June last year, and sought investment in several stocks of Thai-based firms and Macau-based casino. Apart from these, they have also sought investment for a new digital coin known as Dragon Coin, according to a report in coindesk.com. Once the digital coin is issued, the group claimed that the virtual asset could be used at the casino and brought the young person to Macau casino.
The objective of inviting him to the casino center is to showcase the legitimacy of the project. This has also lured Saarimaa into the scheme thus leading him to transfer to the group a total of 5,564 bitcoins. However, he could not see any returns from his investments even after several months. Following this, the cryptocurrency millionaire has preferred to lodge a complaint with the Crime Suppression Division (CSD) in Thailand in January this year. He also brought in his local business partner since both thought that it was nothing but a scam.
Following the complaints, the CSD had to start its investigation into the entire issue. In its investigation report, the crime branch alleged that the group has never involved in making any investments for Saarimaa as claimed by them. On the other hand, they have made use of the bitcoins and liquidated every digital coin into Thai Baht. On top of it, they have deposited the funds generated from the divestment of bitcoins into seven bank accounts.
The CSD has alleged in its report that the fraudsters have made close to 800 million baht. This translated into approximately $24 million though it was not clear as to when the group has resorted to selling the digital coins. A number of nations allege this type of luring investor as nothing but ‘Ponzi scheme.’
The needle of Suspicion On Film Actor
It took several months for CSD to investigate into the issue and started suspecting Thai film actor, Jiratpisit “Boom Jaravijit. The police have also arrested him last week for his alleged role in the plan. There were also further allegations that his sibling, Prinya Jaravijit, was suspected to be a ringleader of the scheme. The individual has left the country to the United States through South Korea.
For its part, the CSD is now engaged in coordinating with the American authorities so that they could zero in on the primary suspect. Significantly, this is a type of investments that attract investors from developing economies. The sharp drop in prices of most digital currencies in the current year from the peak seen in December has also dragged down sentiments.