17,000 victims in a cryptocurrency scam

A massive global cryptocurrency scam has claimed 17,000 lives in Spain alone.

Mercè, 80 years old and resident of Puigcerdà in the Catalan department of Girona, lost 800,000 euros in a scam related to cryptocurrency. The old lady first responded to a Whatsapp message from a certain Graison. The latter, pretending to be a financial adviser, will remain in contact with the octogenarian for four years to steal 500,000 euros from him in order to invest them in crypto-currencies.

As time passes, the suspicions of the victim awaken on the real identity of his supposed adviser. She asked for the recovery of the sum. After making Mercè believe that her financial adviser had died, the scammers on the phone still managed to extract an additional 300,000 euros from her. This time they pretended to be a law firm commissioned by a group of victims to recover the sums invested.

A global scam

Mercè finally files a complaint with the Mossos d’Esquadra de Puigcerdà police station, triggering one of the most complex investigations into financial scams related to cryptocurrencies in Europe. Investigators will find that Mercé’s case is not isolated. An organization of almost industrial scale, directed from Albania by an adviser to the current Minister of Defence, has scammed 17,000 victims in Spain alone.

This mafia, to capture its victims, has opened many fake websites in the field of cryptocurrency, pushing the vice so far as to sponsor the Seville football team, with the name of a fake company Everfxprinted on the players’ shorts.

The criminal organization had opened dozens of call centers located in Albania, Bulgaria, Georgia, Macedonia and Ukraine from which hundreds of fake financial advisers manipulated the victims, leading them to invest all their savings in non-existent products. In total, following the police actions carried out in these countries, 15 call centers were dismantled and significant equipment was seized, including 355 computers, mobile phones, tablets and other electronic objects containing information on individuals.

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