Indian police uncover $4m ‘Ripple Future’ scam
Indian police have arrested two suspects believed to be the perpetrators of a cryptocurrency scam that took a total of 300m rupees (INR) – approximately $4m – from 1,800 investors.
Borrowing the name of XRP ledger owner Ripple Labs, the scammers named their fake crypto company ‘Ripple Future’ and promised investors that they could triple their money in under nine months.
The Press Trust of India (PTI) reports that the company purported to be headquartered in the US, but investigators say it was clearly being run from Ghaziabad, a city close to the Indian capital of Delhi.
The scam was uncovered after nearly 50 investors filed a complaint. Police are seeking a third person reported to be an accomplice, in addition to the two arrested.
Series of scams
According to news magazine India Today, the country has seen a growing number of cases.“This is not first time that a cryptocurrency scam has duped people in India. Past couple of months have witnessed a sudden surge in cryptocurrency-based Ponzi schemes, some of which have also been associated with celebrities and politicians,” it reports.
In June, the Enforcement Directorate questioned Raj Kundra, the husband of actress and model Shilpa Shetty, over his alleged involvement in a scam run by GainBitcoin founder Amit Bhardwaj (above), who is accused of cheating investors of around $150m. Bhardwaj was arrested by Pune police at Delhi airport in April.
Mumbai police also broke up another cryptocurrency scam in June operating under the guise of real estate firm The Flinstone Group, which duped around 25,000 investors.