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Japanese Prosecutors Free Eight in High-profile Crypto Fraud Case

Tim Alper
Last updated: | 1 min read

Tokyo prosecutors have released eight people accused of cryptocurrency-related crime in an ongoing, high-profile fraud case.

Source: iStock/twinsterphoto

Prosecutors did not reveal their reasons for releasing the eight former suspects. However, media outlet TV Asahi says it believes prosecutors had “insufficient evidence” to press charges against the people it released. Prosecutors have indicted the remaining four suspects, including a 32-year-old beauty salon manager named by police as the group’s ringleader.

Police in the Japanese capital, working in conjunction with forces in the Hyogo Prefecture, arrested 12 people accused of tricking a high-profile company executive out of almost USD 2 million worth of cryptocurrency.

The group is said to have convinced the executive’s broker to transfer funds to him in exchange for a suitcase full of cash. Many reports have claimed the cash was fake, and that as soon as the funds were transferred, the suspects withdrew the funds in yen via cryptocurrency exchanges.

The executive is said to have agreed to the deal as he was looking to sell his cryptocurrency funds, but wanted to avoid paying exchange commission fees.