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Man arrested in UAE for Dh2 million Bitcoin fraud

Afkar Abdullah /Sharjah
Filed on February 13, 2018 | Last updated on February 13, 2018 at 06.31 am

(Supplied photo)

The victim approached the police and a security team was formed to begin the probe.

The Sharjah Police have succeeded in restoring Dh2 million to an Indian national, who was conned by fraudsters in one-of-its-first-kind of fraud involving Bitcoin transaction - which is banned in the UAE.

Lt Colonel Mohamed Hassan Al Shamsi, deputy director of the criminal investigation department (CID) of the Sharjah Police, said the CID sleuths swung into action and arrested one of the accused - a Pakistani national, who along with his other Pakistani accomplice staying outside UAE, fleeced the victim, claiming they were selling the currency after the money was handed over to them by the victim through his bank account.

"We came to know that the victim had previously dealt with Bitcoins and earned huge amounts of money which encouraged him to give it another try," he added.

It all started after the Indian man browsed the net and found out that the duo was engaged in Bitcoin trading. He negotiated with them to buy the currency after paying them the money.

The victim and one of the conmen agreed to meet at a coffee shop at a mall in Sharjah. As the victim was having his coffee, the accused alleged that a network problem was delaying the money transfer and he will try again in a while. He excused himself, saying he had to go and speak to his wife, who was waiting for him in the car parking lot as she was encountering a problem. The victim kept waiting for him. When he called the man, he found his phone switched off.

The victim approached the police and a security team was formed to begin the probe. The cops zeroed in on the whereabouts of the suspect and nabbed him. They searched his house and recovered the victim's money as well as money transfers made to his accomplice.

During interrogation, the arrested suspect confessed that his partner who stays abroad is the kingpin. The suspect said a financial problem had driven him to the crime. He was detained and will be referred to the public prosecution for further investigation.

Lt Colonel Shamsi urged members of the society to desist from dealing in activities related to digital currency, as it is prohibited in the UAE.

Col Ibrahim Al Ajill, director of research and investigation department, said these kinds of activities (specially betting online) are banned all across the UAE.

afkarali@khaleejtimes.com

 


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