A South Korean cryptocurrency investor reportedly became the target of a scam in which a Serbian buyer gave the businessman €2 million in counterfeit notes in exchange for approximately $2.3 million in Bitcoin (BTC).
The peer-to-peer exchange took place at a five-star luxury hotel in July in Nice, France. Soon after the Singapore-based South Korean businessman received the large amount of fiat currency, he found that he had been given counterfeit notes that were described as “crude, photocopied fakes.”
Arrested At A Five-Star Hotel
When the the South Korean informed the authorities, the Serbian was soon tracked down and arrested at a five-star hotel located in Cannes, France. The criminal, Gerard Boudoux, was also in possession in of a luxury vehicle and a watch worth 100,000 euros at the time of his arrest.
It appears that the police had already been looking for Boudox as he is suspected of being part of an organized crime network. At present, police officials are trying to locate another individual who was also allegedly involved in the fraudulent transaction.
According to the South Korean victim, he met Boudoux and his accomplice while on a business trip to France. At first, the Serbian had expressed an interest in making an investment in the South Korean’s Singapore-based cryptocurrency company. Their conversation then reportedly led to the Serbian offering to buy the businessman’s bitcoins worth $2.3 million.
Many More Fraudulent Crypto Transactions
Notably, this is not the first or the only incident in which an investor was scammed by being given counterfeit fiat in exchange for a large amount of digital currency. In April, 190 million yen ($.1.7 million) in bitcoin were stolen from a marketing professional in Tokyo when 12 scammers handed him counterfeit currency in exchange for his digital assets.
The fraudulent transaction was reported on July 25th, 2017 and also took place at a hotel located in Tokyo, Japan. In order to lure the victim, the criminals had offered ¥200 million in exchange for the marketing professional’s bitcoins worth ¥190 million at the time.
Earlier in 2016, a group of conmen stole 500 bitcoins from two Belarusian citizens, which were valued at over 300,000 euros at that time. The fraudulent peer-to-peer exchange involved the conmen handing over almost all fake currency notes to the victims.
Criminal activity associated with cryptocurrencies has increased dramatically. As CryptoGlobe recently reported, three Chinese citizens were arrested after allegedly stealing $87 million in cryptocurrency by hacking into accounts belonging to private local corporations and individuals.