UK Police get hold of stolen Ethereum worth $9.5M in an Investment Scam
Manchester police force seized a total of $22 million stolen cryptocurrency in a Binance Smart Chain service scam, including $9.5 million worth Ethereum found on a single encrypted USB drive.
UK police found the scammers guilty of holding “significant amount of money” had been deposited before diverting the funds into their own crypto wallets and shutting down the website. The police arrested a 23-year-old man and a 25-year-old woman while they are in Manchester, for laundering and fraud charges.
Greater Manchester Police’s Economic Crime Unit successfully tracked down the stolen cryptocurrency after destroying an online scam. As per a press release from the police, the scammers tricked people from UK, US, Europe, China, Australia and Hong Kong into investing in an online fake trading service Binance Smart Chain.
Following the investigation, the police are were able to recover “90% of the cryptocurrency stolen”, with one encrypted USB stick worth of £6.85 million ETH and a “cryptograph safety deposit box”, including its access code worth £10.8 million. Though the police did not make it clear either the deposit box contained Ethereum or other cryptocurrencies.
The Economic Crime Unit stated, “Unfortunately for them, the scammers did not disappear without a trace.” They have started to return the stolen assets to their owners, some of the owners are yet to be founded.
Joe Harrop, Detective Chief Inspector of Greater Manchester Police’s Economic Crime Unit pointed out, “Our lives are increasingly moving online or onto our phones, and currencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum are often seen as the future when it comes to money and trading… we’re seeing a rise in opportunist criminals looking to exploit these trends.”
Few months back, in June, UK Metropolitan Police’s Economic Crime Command’s detectives executed the biggest cryptocurrency capture in the country as well as one of the largest globally. Reportedly, the officers captured digital assets worth $158.8 million in a money laundering case.
CBW - External Analyst