South Korean swaps bitcoins for 2 mln euros in fake notes

August 19, 2018
Crypto-currencies like bitcoin are known to be used by criminals for transactions and money-laundering

The deal sounded murky from the start: in exchange for bitcoin worth two million euros ($2.3 million), the wealthy buyer would hand over the equivalent sum in cash in a luxury hotel on the French riviera.

The seller, a South Korean businessman with a company specialised in the crypto-currency in Singapore, accepted the proposition nevertheless and met the Serbian buyer in July.

But once the transaction was completed in a in the city of Nice, the South Korean realised the 500-euro notes he had been handed were crude, photocopied fakes, police sources told AFP.

After the victim filed a at the end of July, the Serbian man was arrested at a top-end hotel in the glitzy town of Cannes in the south of France, apparently living the high-life with a and a 100,000-euro watch.

After appearing in court, he was remanded in custody on charges of fraud and being part of a organised crime network, his lawyer Gerard Boudoux told AFP on Sunday.

Police are still looking for his alleged accomplice.

The South Korean said he had been approached by the men initially over a possible investment in his company.

The discussions led instead to the transaction that would see the South Korean transfer the bitcoin to a foreign account in exchange for the cash.

Regulators worldwide are grappling with the boom in crypto-currencies like , which are known to be used by criminals for transactions and money-laundering.

Explore further: Easing stance, South Korea to adopt real-name crypto trading

Related Stories

Bitcoin hits 4-month low after currency exchange theft

June 13, 2018

The price of bitcoin has fallen to a four-month low of $6,370, days after South Korean virtual currency exchange Coinrail said hackers had stolen over $37 million, or almost a third of the virtual currency it had stored.

Recommended for you

Physicists discover new class of pentaquarks

March 26, 2019

Tomasz Skwarnicki, professor of physics in the College of Arts and Sciences at Syracuse University, has uncovered new information about a class of particles called pentaquarks. His findings could lead to a new understanding ...

Study finds people who feed birds impact conservation

March 26, 2019

People in many parts of the world feed birds in their backyards, often due to a desire to help wildlife or to connect with nature. In the United States alone, over 57 million households in the feed backyard birds, spending ...

Matter waves and quantum splinters

March 25, 2019

Physicists in the United States, Austria and Brazil have shown that shaking ultracold Bose-Einstein condensates (BECs) can cause them to either divide into uniform segments or shatter into unpredictable splinters, depending ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.