India: Investors alert police, multi-million cryptocurrency scam busted
A multi-million cryptocurrency scam was busted in the crime branch of India’s financial capital on June 5, 2018. The scam was operating under the guise of a real estate company since 2016. The name of the company was called as the Flinstone group and they sold primarily a lifestyle of Caribbean homes also offering citizenship to African countries to other disgruntled investors. This was all in the name of a “soon-to-be-legal” cryptocurrency – the MoneyTradeCoin (MTC).
They used this as a means to lure investors in. The group assured that by putting down more money in the coin, it would increase their chances of citizenship and that would subsequently equal to a higher return on investment. Using this tactic, the company was able to easily siphon Indian Rupees that were worth hundreds of crores. That in USD is worth in tens of millions.
Investors get suspicious
This then seemed all too good for those who have invested in the company and for those that believed the dream. According to the Mumbai Police, the fraudulent business was alerted to them early on by a group of businessmen. All of them together has invested already the amount of INR 1.7 Crore in this so-called real estate firm in the promise of high returns. The point in which their suspicion in the real estate firm was aroused was when the Flinstone group did not answer their calls when called for and they missed out the payout dates very frequently.
The police raided the firm’s place on June 4th and had detained two of the people that were responsible for such fraudulent acts that were involved with the company. The alleged mastermind of the operation was Amit Lakhanpal who was on board as the managing director and the police have claimed that he has absconded and still have yet to capture the man. He must have been alerted about the raid many days prior to the raid happening and could have fled the country in a bid to escape the authorities.
A senior officer from the Thane crime branch unit 1 mentioned:
“Employees here were using MTC. Pal and his associates promised investors a 20-times return on investment in a mere six months. But once the deadline passed, the company made several excuses to not release the money.”
In the meanwhile, there are about 70 employees with almost nowhere to go and the police have been interrogating their involvement in the matter as of now.