Count one more (alleged) cryptocurrency scam on the global stage.
Reuters reported Friday that in South Africa, an investigation has been opened into a ruse that parted investors from as much as $80 million of the money with what the newswire termed “huge returns” that never came to fruition.
The investigation centers on a company, BTC Global, which offered investors some attractive returns on investment, to the tune of two percent per day and as much as fifty percent per month.
Some investors got paid, said the police. And then: Nothing. “This may prove to be the tip of the iceberg with potentially thousands more yet to discover they’ve lost money,” Yolisa Matakata, a police investigator, said, according to Reuters.
The company’s services have been suspended noting information gleaned from the Web, and where attempts to contact Steven Twain, noted as “primary trader” at BTC went unanswered.
The latest news follows reports earlier this week that the central bank in South Africa has been looking into whether crypto currencies are in compliance with financial rules, including exchange controls.
Separately, Bloomberg, reporting on BTC, said the scam may have ensnared more than 28,000 people, and that BTC Global “blames its financial woes on a former employee.” The response from BTC Global also notes, per Bloomberg that “we are as shocked and angry as everyone,” adding that “If you feel you’ve had a crime committed against you, you need to follow the legal procedures to deal with the matter.”