Bitcoin Currency Of Choice For Scams And Kidnappings in India
Bitcoin’s use in illicit activities in India continues after kidnappers and a multimillion-dollar Ponzi scheme fall to police.
An Indian Bitcoin investor who lost his money in a scam has allegedly kidnapped a trader and demanded Bitcoin ransom as revenge.
According to the local news source Indian Express, a man by the name of Deepak, currently in police custody, kidnapped Banur trader Ashu Jain after accruing debts of around six mln rupees.
Having purchased Bitcoins he never received, as well as building up stock market debts, Deepak and a crew of accomplices demanded payment in the virtual currency for Jain’s safe return.
“Posing as an ‘investment consultant,’ he contacted some property dealers in Zirakpur from where he got the number of Jain,” a police officer attached to the “unique case,” told the publication.
“They met and told Jain they want to buy property. They then kidnapped him.”
The seemingly random nature of the Bitcoin-related crime is just one of a vast number of cases to have made national news in India over the past few years.
Meanwhile, an altogether larger scale scheme involving Bitcoin has taken hold in India. Webwork Trade Links, an apparent Ponzi scheme also known as Addsbook now also under investigation, managed to accrue five bln rupees ($77 mln) from 200,000 investors in just four months.
The scheme’s website even included pseudo-endorsements from well-known Bollywood celebrities.