GainBitcoin scam in Pune: Cryptocurrency, demand drafts seizure amount to ₹15 crore
The cyber crime cell of Pune police has declared that the cryptocurrency, demand drafts, and other financial seizures from GainBitcoin mastermind Amit Bharadwaj till date is estimated to be worth Rs15 crore. The seizure comprises 237 bitcoins, 90 Etherium and a demand draft (DD) worth Rs38.93 lakh. Cyber cell officials further said that 73 witnesses have been examined in connection with the case and that investor fraud to the tune of Rs7 crore has been unearthed so far.
Cyber investigations into the case has further revealed that Bharadwaj had floated five companies in India for transferring funds to foreign locations. Deputy commissioner of police (economic offences wing and cyber cell) Sudhir Hiremath identified the Indian companies established by Bharadwaj as Nexgen Facility Management Private Limited, Miners India Technologies Private Limited, Norton Sales Private Limited, Radox Infotech Private Limited, Hans Cloud IT LLP, Sabtechs Service ( India) Private Ltd and Grand Wedding Solutions Limited. Bharadwaj floated Amage Miner Private Limited, Hong Kong, ABC Mega allies, Dubai and FB Facility Management, Dubai, where huge investments were made as part of his offshore transactions, Hiremath stated.
The main accused opened a website www.gainbitcoin.com, through which he carried out his scam and cheated investors. The website was later shut by Bharadwaj. The police have formed two teams which have been sent to various locations to hunt the absconding suspects in the case. The police had also moved the court and sought non-bailable warrants against them besides lookout notices have been issued against the accused with prior permission from the court.
The cyber crime cell has arrested 10 persons in connection with the multi-crore bitcoin scam where the investors were lured for buying one bitcoin and promised a commission of 0.1 percent bitcoin, which was aggregated into 1.8 bitcoin for a period of 18 months. Two separate cases of bitcoin fraud have been lodged at Dattawadi and Nigdi police stations respectively. The suspects have been booked under Indian Penal Code (IPC) Sections 406,409,420 and 120 (B), including Information Technology Act 66 D and Prize Chit Fund and Money circulation Act (Banning) Section 4 and 5 and MPID Act Section 3 at Dattawadi police station. Similarly, an offence under IPC 406,409,420,120 B, IT Act 66 D and Prize Chit Fund and Money circulation Act ( Banning ) Section 4 and 5 and MPID Act Section 3 at Nigdi police station.
Cyber crime sleuths say that Amit Bharadwaj had sought to obtain citizenship of the Commonwealth of Dominica and offered to pay USD600,000.
The data analysed by forensic science laboratory has revealed that Amit had bought shares in two companies — Crypto Capital Ltd and Sun & Sand Mining & Minerals Resources.
Forensic investigations into the bitcoin case has also revealed that the bitcoin scam masterminds Amit Bharadwaj and Vivek Bharadwaj were in possession of 82,132 bitcoins and operated 84,617 user ids.