Man fakes his own kidnapping and takes $1M in Bitcoin ransom

Suspect still on the run after stealing more than $1 million in Bitcoin by staging his own kidnapping, Venezuelan authorities claim

Police in Venezuela are probing a scam which saw 23.66 Bitcoin (BTC) disappear after a man posing as a financial advisor staged his own kidnapping.

According to a police report, 23-year-old Andrés Jesús Dos Santos Hernández is wanted for questioning over the incident.

Douglas Rico, director of Venezuela’s Scientific, Criminal and Criminal Investigations Corps (CICPC) said Hernández was now a fugitive wanted by the country’s largest national police agency over charges of suspected money laundering and fraud.

Police allege that Hernandez faked his kidnapping and emptied his clients’ Binance accounts.

“Hernandez simulat[ed] a kidnapping where his captors allegedly forced him to enter the Binance platform and make transfers to different digital wallets, depleting all the crypto assets in question,” authorities said.

Detectives claim Hernandez posed as a financial advisor before taking Bitcoin from numerous local investors.

Only a  few weeks ago, a Venezuelan merchant was kidnapped and killed after his family couldn’t pay a ransom in Bitcoin. Allegedly, the kidnappers explicitly asked for a sum of 1.5 Bitcoin to release the man and even lowered it to 0.5 Bitcoin. However, the family of the victim was unable to gather the ransom funds.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed by the author should not be considered as financial advice. We do not give advice on financial products.

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