A pair of businessmen in Macau will face trial over an alleged cryptocurrency mining scam.
The Macau Public Prosecutions Office claims Frederico dos Santos Rosário and Dennis Lau ripped off 71 investors in the autonomous region on the south coast of China, reports Macau Business.
Prosecutors say the alleged victims, aged between 22 and 63, were taken for a total of MOP14.2m (£1.3m).
The two suspects held seminars at the Macau Civil Servants Association (ATFPM) and discussed an investment opportunity involving a cryptocurrency mining business in Hong Kong.
The Macau Judiciary Police told the Macau News Agency (MNA) that 43 out of the 71 investors connected filed a criminal complaint against Mr Rosário for suspected fraud.
The first trial session is scheduled for June 2 2020.
Local press reports Rosário’s parents both invested in the project.
After the arrest, Lau claimed Rosário had altered some of the investors’ contracts without consent, so Rosário filed a defamation case against Lau in response.
The MNA has attempted to contact Lau while Rosário is refusing to comment until he has spoken to his lawyers.
Cryptocurrency scams have been hitting the headlines a lot in the tail end of 2019.
This week, Coin Rivet reported how Brazilian police swiftly shut down an organised crime ring that allegedly stole $359 million by promising victims substantial returns on Bitcoin investments.
The four-month investigation came to a close on Thursday with police filing charges of fraud, money laundering, criminal association, and forgery against the group of alleged fraudsters.