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A Businessman Who Stole Over $260 Million Through a Fake Crypto Exchange Arrested

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ByMarcel Bich

Apr 27, 2023
Marcel Bich
Latest posts by Marcel Bich (see all)

A Chinese businessman who, along with his accomplices, stole over $1 billion through fraudulent schemes has been arrested by US authorities. The US Department of Justice announced the arrest of Ho Van Kwok and reported that his partner in crime, Kin Min Ji, remains at large.

Kwok is alleged to have opened more than 20 accounts across various banks, accumulating roughly $634 million. It is unclear how he was able to open so many accounts without attracting the attention of regulators or which banks held his funds. As part of the investigation, all of the money has been seized by US authorities.

Other Financial Crimes

Aside from securities fraud and money laundering, Kwok and his associates are also charged with stealing $262 million through a phony cryptocurrency exchange called the Himalaya Exchange. The Department of Justice asserts that, to expand their fraudulent campaign, Kwok, Ji, and other unidentified individuals created the Himalaya dollar (HDO) stablecoin and the Himalaya coin (HCN) token.

Kwok reassured potential investors in videos on social media that he would reimburse them for 100% of their lost funds if the stablecoin or token crashed. Investors were promised returns of tens of thousands of percent.

215 Years In Prison

Ji promoted the exchange’s high profits in the media. For instance, he claimed that a €3.5 million Ferrari was purchased through the exchange using HDO tokens. In reality, the car was purchased by someone close to Kwok via a bank transaction, and a fake exchange transaction was conducted to make it seem as though the car was bought using HDO tokens.

Using the stolen funds, the individual who has been arrested, along with his accomplices, managed to acquire a plot of land in New Jersey that included a mansion, expensive furniture, a luxurious yacht measuring 44 meters in length, and even an exclusive edition of a Bugatti car. The arrested individual, Kwok, could potentially face a sentence of up to 215 years based on the twelve charges against him.

 
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Marcel Bich

Marcel ‘s passion for the world of cryptocurrencies and his comprehensive knowledge of blockchain technology make him an invaluable asset to our team. He stays updated on the latest trends, regulations, and emerging technologies in the crypto space, ensuring that our audience receives accurate and up-to-date information.