The DOJ has sentenced two Canadian nationals to prison for bitcoin fraud. They were sentenced to two years in federal prison and three years of supervised release.
19 March, 2020 | AtoZ Markets – The US Department of Justice (DOJ) has sentenced two Canadian to two years in federal prison. They impersonated as HitBTC employees on Twitter and stealing 23.2 bitcoins from an Oregon resident.
According to the DOJ, Karanjit Khatar, 23, and Jagroop Khatkar, 24, were officially sentenced to prison for money laundering and conspiracy in electronic fraud. Moreover, the FBI investigated this case and continued by Quinn P. Harrington and Julia E. Jarrett, assistants to the Oregon District Attorney.
2 Canadians Steal 23.2 Bitcoin Through a Twitter Scam
Starting in October 2017, Karanjit Khatkar and Jagroop Khatkar used a fraudulent Twitter account, @HitBTCAssist, to impersonate customer service representatives of the HitBTC cryptocurrency exchange. However, They tricked a victim into revealing their e-mail address, HitBTC and Kraken login information. Moreover, Jagroop transferred 23.2 Bitcoins into the Karanjit wallet.
Worth $ 119,000 today, the stolen Bitcoins were worth around $ 130,000 at the time of the theft. Moreover, the scammers split the BTC evenly, quickly selling Bitcoins to finance an exorbitant lifestyle, including casino games and luxury vehicles.
Karanjit Khatkar bought a Mercedes-Benz for almost $ 56,598 in Canadian dollars within two days of the theft. He also gambled with around ten thousand dollars while visiting high-end casinos in Las Vegas.
Karanjit Khatkar arrested in Las Vegas in July 2019, while Jagroop Khatkar volunteered in December 2019. however, they both pleaded guilty to “conspiracy to defraud and money laundering” at the end of last year.
According to the announcement, they sentenced to two years in federal prison and three years of supervised release. However, they agreed to pay a refund of $ 184,510 and issued a check for $ 142,349 as prepayment.
Crypto Scammers Capitalize on Coronavirus Panic
Several government regulators warned of a recent spate of scams aimed at taking advantage of widespread fears related to COVID-19.
As AtozMarkets reported, the New York Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) concerned that scammers may try to exploit the virus epidemic. However, the NYDFS highlighted the risk of under-the-radar hacking. It also urged companies to consider implementing additional security measures that could detect “fraudulent trading or withdrawal behavior”.
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