MBC owner nabbed for scamming B1bn

MBC owner nabbed for scamming B1bn

Police raided the MBC Club and arrested the owner for his involvement in a Ponzi scheme, which has allegedly defrauded over 1,000 people and caused about 1 billion baht in losses.

The suspect was identified only as Mr Winkorn. He was charged with fraud and introducing false information to a computer system to cause damages, deputy national police chief Pol Gen Damrongsak Kittiprapas said yesterday.

An investigation by the Police Cyber Taskforce (PCT) showed the suspect owned a passbook that detailed money received from the victims.

Pol Gen Damrongsak said the club persuaded victims to invest in the forex market, promising an average monthly return of 40%. It also promised to give away a Porsche 718 Boxster if the investment fund hit its target of 40 million baht by the end of December.

The scheme was divided into five packages -- Member, Silver, Titanium, Gold and Platinum -- based on different levels of investment. These were 50,758 baht, 253,750 baht, 507,500 baht, 2.53 million baht and 5.07 million baht, respectively. Like other scams, the network initially paid out some profits to the victims on time to lure them to invest more.

However, the returns soon stopped coming. The club then offered a new form of investment called "Save Coin SME". It encouraged victims to buy a digital coin called CMBC coin with the promise of a 20% monthly dividend.

Later, the club told the victims that it had stopped paying the dividend and would reimburse the rest of their investment in the form of cryptocurrency. Victims were told they could trade their CMBC coins on the "FFF Exchange", which turned out to be a phoney platform.

The club defrauded more than 1,000 victims causing losses in excess of 1 billion baht, said Pol Gen Damrongsak.

Police are expanding the investigation to track down any accomplices, he said.

He also drew attention to another scam relating to an online ordering platform, which had falsely claimed it was associated with King Power. It deceived more than 15 victims out of 10 million baht in total.

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