Earlier this week, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) issued a press release about the extradition of a Swedish citizen, Roger Nils-Jonas Karlsson, from Thailand to the United States for alleged securities fraud, wire fraud and money laundering. The complaint alleges that he and his company, Eastern Metal Securities, defrauded victims of more than $11 million through an investment scheme in which Karlsson convinced individuals to invest cryptocurrencies into a product called a "Pre Funded Reversed Pension Plan." Instead of making any investments, Karlsson directed the funds into his personal bank account, and the funds are apparently now tied up in Thai real estate.
A DOJ press release issued last week detailed the arrest of two men in Massachusetts for crimes including aggravated identity theft and computer fraud. According to the DOJ, the men targeted people who likely had significant amounts of cryptocurrency, such as executives of cryptocurrency companies, and conspired to take over their social media accounts and steal their cryptocurrency using techniques including "SIM swapping," whereby a victim's cellphone carrier is convinced to reassign the victim's cellphone SIM card to the criminal, who then uses it to hack into the victim's various accounts.
The court-appointed receiver of Einstein Exchange, a Canadian cryptocurrency exchange, recently stated that the exchange has only $45,000 remaining of the reported $16 million in customer funds. The exchange was seized by Canadian officials earlier this month after receiving complaints from Einstein customers that they could not access their accounts.
Karatbars, a German company, was recently ordered by German officials to wind up its blockchain-based business in Germany after allegations it was luring investors into a pyramid scheme. Around the same time, South African officials issued their own warning, telling consumers to avoid investments offered by the company. Karatbars issues KaratGold Coin, a supposedly gold-backed cryptocurrency that runs on the Ethereum network and is listed on approximately 30 exchanges. And reports out earlier this week describe a hack into the Monero website, with currency-stealing malware allegedly delivered to users who were downloading Monero wallet software. Representatives from the company issued a statement strongly recommending anyone who downloaded the wallet during certain times on Monday, Nov. 18, to check whether they might have contaminated files.
For more information, please refer to the following links:
- Two Massachusetts Men Arrested and Charged with Nationwide Scheme to Steal Social Media Accounts and Cryptocurrency
- Alleged Cryptocurrency Fraudster Extradited From Thailand to Face Charges in Multi-Million Dollar Investment Scheme
- $16 million in funds allegedly owed to crypto-traders all but gone, receiver says
- German firm told to wind up cryptocoin business after pyramid scheme claims
- Malware on Official Monero Website Can Steal Crypto: Investigator
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