- South African Police are investigating BTC Global over crypto investment fraud.
- The police claimed BTC Global has defrauded 28,000 investors carting away with more than 1 billion Rand.
South Africa: The South African Police released a statement on Friday 25th May that it is presently investigating a suspected major crypto Ponzi-Scheme fraud. The statement stated that more than 28,000 investors have been defrauded and lost more than 1 billion Rand, which currently worth approx. $80.4 million. The investigative unit of South Africa’s Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (DPCI), the Hawks, explained the case, which according to them involves “BitCaw Trading Company, commonly known as BTC Global:
“[Targeted members of the public are believed to have been] encouraged by BTC Global agents to invest with promises of 2% interest per day, 14% per week and ultimately 50% per month. Payments were allegedly made every Monday. Some of the investors got paid in terms of the agreement. However, the payments suddenly stopped.”
Based on all these too-good-to-be-true promises made by BTC Global, as well as other warning signals which include a 4 percent referral bonus, SEO Spark – a South Africa-based marketing agency – stated last year that BTC Global was a fraudulent Ponzi-scheme.
However, BitCaw Trading repudiated the report that it has any relationship with BTC Global. BitCaw Trading stated that it “do[es] not manage third-party money or offer any kind of investment” and therefore “shocked to see [its] name connected with [the alleged scam].”
On its website, BTC Global claimed that its sudden termination of payments was due to an elusive former admin member, whom it claimed “cannot locate,” presently. It stated:
“We are as shocked and angry as everyone. But we all knew the risks involved in placing funds with Steven. We all became complacent with Steven. And all of us funded him independently. Until Steven Twain resurfaces or is found there is nothing the admin team can do…”
Yolisa Matakata, the Lieutenant-general for The Hawks has called on any other affected investors to present their case. He said:
“This may prove to be the tip of the iceberg with potentially thousands more yet to discover they’ve lost money.”
The US regulator recently took a big step to further educate investors against crypto-related fraud, especially those involving Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs), by launching a fake ICO website “HoweyCoins”.