Breaking

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Police in India arrest low level Bitconnect promoter - while the kingpins still enjoy their freedom...

This week articles popped up with headlines like "Alleged head of BitConnect cryptocurrency scam arrested in Dubai" (link) along with many others using similar wording that would have you thinking someone of importance behind the Bitconnect scam was now behind bars.

But make no mistake - the man they arrested is a nobody, and the kingpins who walked away with hundreds of million worth of people's money are still out there enjoying their freedom.

If you're one of the long time readers here at Global Crypto Press you know Bitconnect and myself go way back.  I was one of the more vocal people in the cryptocurrency world trying to warn Bitconnect users that this wasn't going to end well for them.

I was also the only one to ever confront Bitconnect reps in person, at the Silicon Valley Blockchain Expo (That video here).

Bitconnect was a standard pyramid scheme, meaning anyone could sign up and make money from getting others to sign up as well.  The man arrested in India is nothing more than a simple Bitconnect member who signed up a bunch of people under him on the pyramid.

The accused, Divyesh Darji is being called the "head of Bitconnect in India" but is not one of the people behind Bitconnect, at all. In fact, the site was up and running and fairly popular months before the dates of Darji's first posts promoting it.

What he's guilty of is just being one of the more aggressive promoters of their referral program. Darji's mistake was going all out, loving the spotlight, and even holding seminars to entice others to join the scheme.

“Darji was living in Dubai. A look-out circular was issued against him. The Immigration Department alerted us when he was on the way from Dubai to Ahmedabad, after which he was arrested today evening. The company came into existence in 2016, and in 2017, it launched the Bitconnect coin. It remained active till January this year. It released 2.80 crore coins, out of which 1.80 crore coins were sold to investors. The accused held seminars, events in India and other countries promising high interest — daily interest rate of 1 per cent — on investment in Bitconnect coins. The cost of one Bitconnect coin on January 16, 2018, when the company shut down, was USD 362.” a spokesperson for Police stated.

The real people behind Bitconnect never showed their faces, and Darji is a perfect example of why.  Remember - the people behind it knew it was a scam from the beginning, they knew one day it would end and people would be trying to hunt them down.

I have very little pity for Bitconnect "victims" since things reached a point months before Bitconnect ran off with their money, where I believe everyone involved had heard it was a scam - and decided to ignore the warnings while they were still making a profit.

But that doesn't mean those behind the whole operation shouldn't still be punished.

That's perhaps the wildest part of this whole aftermath.  So far we have Bitconnect promoters who had popular YouTube channels promoting Bitconnect getting sued here in the US, and this guy in India getting arrested - but really, these low-level people got their money stolen in the end too.

Then when it comes to the people who actually created Bitconnect - not only have they faced no consequences, but it appears they did such a good job on concealing their identity - no one even knows their names, or what country they reside in.

So just clearing things up from the misleading headlines, no - the "head of Bitconnect" was not arrested.

The FBI's case is still officially "open" though, so maybe there is still hope.

Just filed: Additional video report with more about this story:


-------  
Author: Ross Davis
E-Mail: Ross@GlobalCryptoPress.com Twitter:@RossFM
San Francisco News Desk