- Bitcoin king, a crypto scammer arrested in Brazil
- How US authorities and Brazil authorities bursted similar crypto criminals in 2020
Authorities in Brazil have caught up with Claudio Oliveira, better known as “The Bitcoin King,” after heisting about 7,00 Bitcoin. He is being charged with fraud and money laundering.
Authorities in Brazil said in a press release that the Bitcoin king, as he is fondly called, headed a company promising high returns for clients who invest their Bitcoins with it. After about three years of investigation, he was found to have duped at least $250M from thousands of customers.
His cover got blown in 2019 when 7,000 Bitcoin disappeared under his watch. It led to opening an investigation into his activities. The firm also applied for a judicial recovery order – a financial trick by which the firm can avoid bankruptcy.
In the meantime, the company did not stop providing its services to its customers and failed to define why the assets are missing. Moreover, the exchange came up with an updated version of its platform and asserted that the disappeared tokens were there.
A crack team of 90 federal police officers was formed to investigate the Bitcoin King under the name of “Operation Daemon.”
The team detected Branco Group’s fraud scheme and concluded Bitcoin Kong was diverting the coins to his personal wallets.
Similar to Bitcoin King, US brings down Brazil pyramid scheme
Although this happened in 2020, US authorities, in collaboration with Brazil officials, shut down a major pyramid scheme, seizing over $25M in cryptocurrency held by criminals.
The operation then named ‘operation Egypt’ aimed at bringing down a scam worth over $200 million after it gained high popularity among Brazilians. It had hurt thousand of victims after it started in 2017.
According to the US department of justice, Marco Antonio Fagundes – one of the masterminds behind the whole operation – failed to comply with Brazilian regulations as a financial service provider.
When Fagundes was nabbed, luxury items like Ferraris, Porsches, and BMWs were seized from him apart from his crypto.