Four Chinese nationals and a Lao citizen have been arrested over their role in a cryptocurrency fraud that caused over 2.7 billion baht worth of losses, according to the Cyber Crime Investigation Bureau (CCIB).
CCIB spokesman Kissana Phathanacharoen said on Sunday at least 3,280 people have fallen victim to a fraudulent cryptocurrency investment platform called bchgloballtd.com.
He said victims began coming forward to the police in November last year, claiming they had been duped into investing in gold and cryptocurrency such as USDT.
A CCIB investigation found many of the people involved in running the website were also involved with other fraudulent platforms. After working with Homeland Security Investigation and other international law enforcement agencies, the court finally approved the arrest warrants for the four Chinese and one Lao suspects.
All five of them were arrested for colluding to commit transnational crime, public fraud, as well as putting false information into computer systems and money laundering.
On Aug 10, the Office of the Attorney General moved to prosecute the five suspects. Then, on Sept 4, officers from the Anti-Money Laundering Office confiscated their properties worth 585 million baht.
Pol Col Kissana said the CCIB will continue to reach out to the victims to ensure they are aware of their rights under the law.
Moreover, victims can file complaints via www.thaipoliceonline.com, and via the CCIB's 1441 hotline, said Pol Col Kissana.
The CCIB spokesman said investment scams have caused the most financial damage out of all the scams reported to the police.
Pol Col Kissana said many victims had invested their life savings into the fraudulent scheme, or took a second mortgage on their land or house.
Some victims were approached by strangers or foreigners who invited them to invest using online platforms or foreign mobile apps, promising high and guaranteed returns in a short period of time.
The CCIB is urging the public to always keep an eye out for the registration number of investment firms. They can also check the authenticity of investment websites via www.checkdomain.thaiware.com.