Chinese Authorities Seize Over $4.2B Worth of Digital Assets from PlusToken Ponzi Scheme

| Updated
by Steve Muchoki · 2 min read
Chinese Authorities Seize Over $4.2B Worth of Digital Assets from PlusToken Ponzi Scheme
Photo: Depositphotos

The PlusToken Ponzi scheme is reported to have begun back in May 2018 and advertised a non-existent crypto arbitrage trading platform. 

Chinese law enforcement has seized cryptocurrencies worth over $4.2 billion from the PlusToken Ponzi scheme. Apparently, a total of 194,775 BTC, 833,083 ETH, 1.4 million LTC, 27.6 million EOS, 74,167 DASH, 487 million XRP, 6 billion DOGE, 79,581 units of BCH, and 213,724 USDT have been seized by Chinese law enforcement from seven convicts during the crackdown.

This is a major crackdown that will see the Chinese government own over 1% of the total bitcoins in the circulating supply. Crypto scams have dominated the recent past as the industry adoption rose immensely to both institutional and retail investors.

Things have shifted from the dark web-oriented schemes to the open net thus making it much more difficult for the law enforcement agencies to spot all of them. With a significant portion of crypto investors still not fully educated on the risks associated with the crypto market, Ponzi schemes are poised to thrive parallel to the anticipated bull rally.

The seizure has coincided with increased volatility in the entire crypto market that has seen most assets drop by two digits in the past few days. In addition, it has coincided with the OKEx resumption of withdrawal services after closing for five weeks.

PlusToken Ponzi Scheme

According to the court ruling, the confiscated digital assets will be processed according to Chinese law and the proceeds transferred to the national treasury.

As for the perpetrators, they will serve between 2-11 years behind bars. It is reported that up to 15 people have been convicted, with the offered fines ranging from $100,000 to $1 million. Prior to the arrest, one of the perpetrators is reported to have laundered over $22 million into Chinese Yuan.

Apparently, Chinese law enforcement followed part of the laundered money that was spent on luxury cars, real estate, and insurance policies in Hong Kong. Chinese law enforcement has heavily invested in cyberspace to counter the rising cyber crimes fueled by the increased adoption of digital assets.

The PlusToken Ponzi scheme is reported to have begun back in May 2018, and advertised a non-existent crypto arbitrage trading platform. The scheme asked its customers to deposit not less than $500 and promised hefty returns on a daily basis.

According to court filings, PlusToken had attracted approximately 2.6 million global customers between April 6, 2018, and June 27, 2019.

It was during this period that the scheme managed to collect over 314k BTC, approximately 117,000 BCH, 1.8 million units of LTC, around 928 million XRP, 51 million EOS, 9 million units of ETH, and over 96k units of DASH.

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Steve Muchoki

A financial analyst who sees positive income in both directions of the market (bulls & bears). Bitcoin is my crypto safe haven, free from government conspiracies. Mythology is my mystery! "You cannot enslave a mind that knows itself. That values itself. That understands itself."

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