Turkish police have arrested dozens of people over an alleged large crypto fraud case. One of Turkey’s largest digital currency trading platforms, Thodex, was suddenly shut down this week.
The founder and CEO of that platform have fled the country with reportedly $ 2 billion in investor assets.
62 people were arrested in eight Turkish cities, including Istanbul, where the trading platform was located, according to Anadolu news agency. Sixteen others are still being sought. Thodex’s headquarters have been searched, and computers are said to have been seized. Nearly 400,000 people may have lost their investments in Thodex.
Thodex founder Faruk Fatih Ozer is said to have fled to Albania. In a statement from an unknown location, he said that investors are being repaid and that he will soon return to Turkey and cooperate with the law on the investigation. The Turkish authorities are working on an international arrest warrant for Ozer, which is said to be located in the Albanian capital Tirana.
Many Turks have resorted to trading platforms such as Thodex to invest in digital coins such as bitcoins. In this way, they wanted to protect their savings against the high inflation and the strong exchange rate fluctuations of the Turkish lira.
It was recently announced that Turkey would ban all payments with digital coins such as bitcoins from the end of April. The Turkish central bank says the risks of losses with crypto payments are too significant.