One of Europe’s biggest suspected cryptocurrency fraudsters arrested in Spain. Source: El Pais

Posted by

With your agreement, we and our partners use cookies or similar technologies to store, access, and process personal data like your visit on this website. You can withdraw your consent or object to data processing based on legitimate interest at any time by clicking on “Configuration” or in our Cookies Policy on this website. We and our partners do the following data processing:Personalised ads and content, ad and content measurement, audience insights and product development, Precise geolocation data, and identification through device scanning, Share data and profiles not linked to your identity, Store and/or access information on a deviceEdition:

ELPAISsubscribeLOG INEconomy And BusinessCRYPTOCURRENCIES

One of Europe’s biggest suspected cryptocurrency fraudsters arrested in Spain

The Civil Guard has seized assets worth €2.5m from the 45-year-old man, who has Portuguese nationality and was detained in Valencia

El PaísValencia – Jan 03, 2022 – 10:27 CET

Some of the luxury vehicles seized from the fraud suspect.
Some of the luxury vehicles seized from the fraud suspect.GUARDIA CIVIL (Europa Press)

Spain’s Civil Guard has detained one of Europe’s biggest alleged cryptocurrency fraudsters, in Valencia city in the eastern Valencia region. The 45-year-old male suspect, who has Portuguese nationality, has had more than €2.5 million worth of assets seized, according to the force.

The man is suspected of seven offenses of fraud and money laundering, after creating an apparent cryptocurrency investment platform on a webpage, which was later promoted via forums, radio shows, sports events and even charities. The result was investment from a number of people in both Spain and Portugal. The police operation began in August, after the authorities became aware of the facts thanks to collaboration with private security.

The platform was offering a minimum return of 2.5% a week to investors, depending on the amount invested. The scam was basically a Ponzi scheme, whereby returns were being paid for by the funds provided by new investors, the Civil Guard explained.

The scheme encouraged victims to invest ever-greater amounts of money and to also work to attract more investors. The funds were allegedly being used by the suspect to pay for a high standard of living, including the purchase of luxury cars, vacations and meals.

The police investigation served to identify a number of the victims in Spain, and also determined that the suspect had allegedly committed offenses in Luxembourg, Switzerland and Portugal. On December 2, three searches were carried out: in the man’s home, business headquarters and workshop where some of his assets were hidden, according to the Civil Guard.

Crypto wallets

What’s more, a number of bank accounts and webpages with access to the platform have been blocked, as well as the sites where it was advertised. Documents and electronic devices – including computers, tablets, cellphones and USB cryptocurrency wallets – have also been seized.

A total of 20 luxury vehicles have been seized or identified by the authorities. The total value of the assets frozen, including cars and bank accounts, is more than €2.5 million.

English version by Simon Hunter.

More information

A representation of bitcoin.

What if money disappears?

Moisés Naím

A Bitcoin exchange firm.

Spanish Tax Agency keeping tabs on 15,000 taxpayers who use cryptocurrencies

Jesús Sérvulo González | MadridAdheres to

The Trust Project

More information https://widgets.elpais.com/loteria-navidad/2021/widget_iframe.html

newsletter

Sign up to EL PAÍS in English Edition bulletin

Most viewed

  1. Lanzarote, home to Spain’s stretch of coast with the highest number of illegal hotels
  2. Four Spanish regions set new highs for daily coronavirus cases
  3. The best mountain climber of the century was an unknown young Canadian
  4. Inside the Spanish lab seeking the definitive Covid-19 vaccine
  5. Omicron: ‘The fastest-spreading virus in history’

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s