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Law enforcement agencies of India, based on the complaint of a local investor, organized a search for the founder of the BitConnect cryptocurrency pyramid, accused of fraud for $ 2.4 billion.
The founder of the BitConnect cryptocurrency pyramid, Satish Kumbhani, accused of fraud by the US authorities, is wanted by the Indian police. The police department of the city of Pune in southwest India became interested in Kumbhani’s location after receiving a statement from a local cryptocurrency investor who accused Kumbhani of stealing bitcoins.
A local lawyer lost about 220 BTC worth 420 million rupees (about $5.2 million) while investing in cryptocurrency platforms from 2016 to 2021. According to the victim, Kumbhani and six of his accomplices convinced the investor to invest 54 BTC in cryptocurrency projects. Thus, in addition to the initial investment, the lawyer lost the income of 166 BTC promised to him by the scammers.
This year, U.S. authorities said Kumbhani had likely left India and his whereabouts were now unknown. The BitConnect cryptocurrency pyramid, founded in 2016, was a popular project during the heyday of the initial coin offering (ICO) market. The organizers of BitConnect raised billions of dollars by promising investors to pay 10% of the return on investment in their own BCC token. Users who attracted new investors received bonuses.
Kumbhani disappeared in February after he was charged by U.S. authorities with orchestrating a $2.4 billion Ponzi scheme that affected U.S. citizens. He could face up to 70 years in prison. Last year, the US Department of Justice and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of California sold $56 million worth of crypto assets confiscated from the “promoter” of the BitConnect pyramid to compensate victims.
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