HOKKAIDO (TR) – Hokkaido Prefectural Police have launched an investigation after it was learned a woman in Hakodate City was swindled out of more than 2 million yen in a scam involving the virtual currency bitcoin last year, reports the Asahi Shimbun (Jan. 12).
According to the Hakodate Chuo Police Station, the woman, aged in her 40s, was told via email that was eligible to purchase bitcoin through an automated system in November.
A man claiming to be from a research company later telephoned the woman. “I want you to transfer the right [to you],” he reportedly said during a conversation in December. “I want to engage in a contract with you.”
The woman subsequently entered into the contract. Then, on six occasions between December 11 and 20, she made deposits of a total of 2.5 million yen for the purchase of the virtual currency into a designated account. However, the man dropped out of contact.
“I got greedy,” the woman was quoted by police, according to the Sankei Shimbun (Jan. 12).
Police are treating the case as fraud.