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CBI Seizes $930,000 in Cryptocurrency from Fraudster Targeting US Citizen

The CBI seized over $930,000 in cryptocurrency from an Ahmedabad-based man accused of defrauding a US citizen posing as an Amazon executive.

Key Takeaways

  • CBI confiscates $930,000 in cryptocurrency from an Ahmedabad-based fraudster.
  • The accused posed as “James Carlson” from Amazon’s fraud department to cheat a US citizen.
  • The victim was induced to withdraw and deposit cash into Bitcoin.
  • Two accomplices of the accused are also under investigation.

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has seized cryptocurrency valued at over USD 930,000 (approximately Rs 7.7 crore) from an Ahmedabad-based individual accused of defrauding a US citizen while impersonating a senior executive from Amazon’s fraud department. This case was initiated following information provided by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in the United States.

Another Crypto Fraud

The accused, identified as Ramavat Shaishav, allegedly contacted the victim under the alias “James Carlson” and convinced them that their Amazon account was being compromised by unauthorized individuals. He also claimed that the victim’s social security number was being used fraudulently to create multiple accounts on the e-commerce platform.

In a bid to gain the victim’s trust, Shaishav sent a forged letter, dated September 20, 2022, falsely attributed to the US Federal Trade Commission. Subsequently, the victim withdrew a total of USD 130,000 from their bank accounts between August 30, 2022, and September 9, 2022. The victim was then instructed to deposit this money into a Bitcoin address provided by the fraudster, who also shared a QR code claiming it was associated with the US Treasury.

The investigation led to the recovery of 28 Bitcoins, 55 Ethereum, 25,572 Ripple, and 77 USDT from Shaishav’s e-wallet, all of which were transferred to the government’s wallet during the seizure. The accused is alleged to have misappropriated the victim’s funds.

The CBI has also uncovered the involvement of two accomplices of Shaishav, also based in Ahmedabad. Searches of their premises yielded mobile phones, laptops with incriminating material, and other digital devices.

To Conclude

This case serves as a stark reminder of the dangers of online fraud and the importance of vigilance when dealing with financial transactions, especially involving cryptocurrency. While blockchain technology offers security and transparency, it can also be exploited by fraudsters.

The collaboration between the CBI and the FBI highlights the global nature of cybercrime and the need for international cooperation to combat such threats effectively. It is essential for individuals to verify the authenticity of any communication from organizations and to exercise caution when asked to make financial transactions, especially in cryptocurrency.

This incident underscores the importance of educating the public about the risks associated with digital currencies and the need for robust cybersecurity measures to protect individuals from falling victim to scams like this one.