Chinese police have arrested all 27 suspects behind the massive PlusToken Ponzi scam that swindled $5.7 billion from investors.
July 30 2020 | AtoZ Markets – Chinese police have arrested 27 main suspects alleged to be behind the massive crypto scam dubbed PlusToken. According to a report from the Chinese financial news outlet CLS, led by the Ministry of Public Security, the Chinese police arrested another 82 core members of the scheme.
PlusToken, which operates like a typical pyramid scheme, said to have grown to have over 3,000 layers since 2019.
PlusToken suspects swindled $5.7 billion from investors
The elaborate pyramid scheme dubbed PlusToken 3,000 layers since last year and fleeced over 2 million people by using cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin, as a funding channel. The total amount of crypto assets swindled from investors is approximately worth a whopping 40 billion yuan, or $5.7 billion.
As per the report, the suspects swindled approximately 40 billion yuan or $5.7 billion from investors. This is the first time Chinese police are cracking down on a major international Ponzi scheme using BTC as an exchange method.
PlusToken was launched back in 2018 and was already suspected to be a pyramid scheme as early as September 2018. In June 2019, the company triggered panic when some users could not withdraw funds from the wallets. However, the issues were then brushed off as a “hacker attack.”
PlusToken managed to collect multi-billion dollars from about 800,000 investors. Over a period of time, PlusToken has moved hundreds of millions of dollars. Just last month, PlusToken scammers moved nearly 790,000 stolen Ethereum to an unknown wallet.
Crypto scams continue to rise amid the covid-19 pandemic
Crypto scams around the world have spiked amid the ongoing global pandemic. Earlier this year, the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) issued a warning against the steep rise in Covid-19 crypto scams. Several countries also reported a surge in cryptocurrency scams that included a spike in ransomware attacks, Ponzi schemes, and other different types of scams involving cryptocurrencies.
As the crypto industry continues to gain mainstream exposure, the crimes related to crypto have also seen a surge. Scammers are now tailoring their pitch according to the situation and luring in victims, who eventually lose their investments.
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