On 5th September 2018, the Bangkok Post, a Thailand daily, stated that the 22-year-old Finnish victim Aarni Otava Saarimaa was recently lured into investing 797 million Thai baht worth of Bitcoin. He recently dropped his complaint after reaching a settlement with two of the alleged scammers, Prasit Srisuwan and Chakris Ahmad.
The victim had given 5500 Bitcoin [BTC] to Mr. Prinya who supposedly did not spend the money on the agreed investments. Instead, Prinya transferred most of the BTC to his family members. His younger brother, famous Thai screen actor Jiratpisit Jaravijit, his father Suwit Jaravijit, his mother Lertchatkamol and his younger sister Supitcha Jaravijit have been accused.
The Finnish man, along with his partner, Chonnikan Kaewkasee, a Thai businesswoman handed over 797 million Thai baht in Bitcoin [BTC] to the scammers under an agreement to invest the Bitcoins in three different ventures. The ventures included Dragon Coin and Expay Software Co. However, the money was used for investment in real estate businesses.
The police have taken the defendants into custody which includes the popular actor, Jiratpisit “Boom” Jaravijit. The actor’s brother Prinya was the key suspect and is reportedly overseas. He is expected to turn himself in on 17th September. The actor’s parents faced more serious charges of money laundering and were accused to move the Bitcoins from wallet to wallet.
The deputy commander of the Crime Suppression Division, Pol Col Chakrit Sawasdee stated that Mr. Saarimaa withdrew the complaint against the accused after they reached a settlement. The Thai law permits such charges to be dropped if the victim agrees to reach a settlement. According to the law, both the accused would no longer face any charges in relation to the Bitcoin fraud case. However, the compensation involved in the settlement is not clear.
Based on further investigation, the police found that Mr. Prinya and his group convinced Mr. Saarimaa to invest 440 million Thai baht in Dragon Coin, 92.69 million baht in Expay Software Co, and 264.78 million baht in companies listed on the Stock Exchange of Thailand.
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