Indian State Police Reportedly In Search of BitConnect Founder
- BitConnect is one of the crypto scams whose founders are yet to be found.
The founder of the cryptocurrency Ponzi scheme, BitConnect, is reportedly wanted by the Indian State Police. Satish Kumbhani, BitConnect’s founder, is now a person of interest to other agencies. According to a local Indian source, Kumbhani is currently under investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation after previously being charged in a US court with running a global Ponzi scheme worth US$2.4 billion.
Indian authorities became interested in Kumbhani’s case after a Pune-based lawyer filed a complaint alleging that he had lost roughly 220 Bitcoin (BTC), or $5.2 million, to the BitConnect scam. As a result, the Pune police, working under the Indian state Maharas tra Police, started investigating Kumbhani and other figures of interest. According to the complainant, his initial investment of 54 BTC yielded 166 BTC in returns, which he reportedly proceeded to redeploy on the platform.
According to the FIR, BitConnect defrauded the claimant’s initial investment and returns. The deals were made between June 2016 and June 2021. A search for the accused has been launched, but no arrests have yet been made. According to officials, there is an ongoing investigation to determine if the same group of individuals has defrauded more victims.
BitConnect is one of the largest cryptocurrency scams in history. The scheme allegedly raised $2.4 billion from unsuspecting investors in two years. BitConnect, which started as a platform and a digital currency in February 2016, broke down in January 2018, and the founders later vanished with the money from investors.
Four years after it shut down, BitConnect has remained a subject of investigation amongst regulators. Earlier this year, the US Department of Justice released a statement describing Kumbhani’s fraud through his Ponzi scheme. A part of the release read
Kumbhani and his co-conspirators touted BitConnect’s purported proprietary technology, known as the “BitConnect Trading Bot” and “Volatility Software,” as being able to generate substantial profits and guaranteed returns by using investors’ money to trade on the volatility of cryptocurrency exchange markets. However, BitConnect operated as a Ponzi scheme by paying earlier BitConnect investors with money from later investors. In total, Kumbhani and his co-conspirators obtained approximately $2.4 billion from investors.
The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has also been looking for Kumbhani and his accomplices, but their search has proven unfruitful. However, the SEC believes Kumbhani was last seen in his home country of India.
BitcConnect is one of the many crypto scams that have grabbed the attention of regulators worldwide. Unfortunately, it is also one of the cryptocurrency frauds whose principal organizers are still yet-to-be-found. Regulators and prosecutors worldwide are also looking into frauds like OneCoin, a $4 billion Ponzi scheme that was shut down in late 2019.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation added Ruja Ignatova, the German-Bulgarian founder of OneCoin, to its Ten Most Wanted list in June 2022. Ruja was last seen in 2017 and is believed to be strongly covering her tracks.
These scam stories have all intensified the demand for crypto regulation. Global agencies are currently working out policies that they believe will make it difficult for crypto scams and frauds to happen.