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Crypto CEO Accused Of $2.5B Scam Faces Almost 41,000 Years In Prison

Crypto CEO Accused Of $2.5B Scam Faces Almost 41,000 Years In Prison

The CEO of Thodex, Faruk Fatih Özer, has reportedly been arrested in Albania.

The CEO and founder of the defunct cryptocurrency exchange Thodex, Faruk Fatih Özer, has been arrested in Vlorë, Albania, PC Gamer reports. After Thodex collapsed in 2021, it was revealed that the exchange had reportedly transferred about $125 million (£108 million) worth of bitcoin to a US-based crypto exchange, called Kraken, despite the many Thodex investors losing everything. 

Chainalysis, a blockchain analysis firm, wrote back in January that Thodex was also responsible for billions more dollars worth of ‘rug pull’ scams (essentially, where a business gets set up, looks legit, but is then collapsed, and investors’ money is lost). 

"We should note that roughly 90% of the total value lost to rug pulls in 2021 can be attributed to one fraudulent centralized exchange, Thodex, whose CEO disappeared soon after the exchange halted users’ ability to withdraw funds,” they wrote. PC Gamer calculates that this works out at around $2.5 billion (£2.16 billion) of crypto.

The true numbers are hazy, however - as PC Gamer writes, other sources claim that Özer may have fled with $20 million (£17 million) rather than the full value, which is obviously significantly less (but still a huge amount). 

Reportedly, six other individuals have already been jailed for playing a role in Thodex - Hürriyet Daily News report that a 40,564 years sentence is being sought for everyone involved, including Özer. 

Featured Image Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures, Michael Fortsch via Unsplash

Topics: Cryptocurrency, Real Life, no article matching