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Police nab 12 in ¥200 million bitcoin fraud

Kenta Higashi
Kenta Higashi (Twitter)

TOKYO (TR) – In a joint investigation, Tokyo and Hyogo police have arrested 12 persons, including a 24-year-old man, over the defrauding of a male company executive in connection with the virtual currency bitcoin last year, reports TBS News (Apr. 16).

In July, Kenta Higashi, a 24-year-old employee in the fruit and vegetable industry living in Kobe, and the other suspects allegedly offered the executive, aged in his 40s, 200 million in cash for the equivalent of 190 million yen in bitcoin.

In carrying out the ruse, the suspects presented what was said to be 200 million yen in cash to to an agent of the victim at a lounge of a hotel in the capital’s Shibuya Ward, according to police.

After the agent told the executive that he had received the cash, he transferred the bitcoins to a designated account managed by a cryptocurrency exchange in Yokohama.

With the majority of the bank notes provided to the agent being fake, the suspects have been accused of fraud. All of the suspects deny the allegations, according to police.

The victim later told police that he accepted the deal in order to evade paying a commission with the exchange.

The transferred bitcoins were later exchanged for cash, police said.