The Delaware Department of Justice’s Investor Protection Unit has issued cease and desist orders against 23 entities and individuals involved in a popular cryptocurrency fraud known as “pig butchering.” The order also freezes accounts allegedly holding cryptocurrency belonging to victims.
Delaware Cracks Down on Hog Slaughter Crypto Scams
Delaware Attorney General Kathy Jennings announced Wednesday that the state Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Investor Protection Division “has issued summary cease and desist orders against 23 entities and individuals involved in a cryptocurrency scam known as the ‘pig slaughter scam.'”
The pig slaughter crypto scam has recently become alarmingly popular. Victims of this type of scam “are groomed over time to make investments using cryptocurrency, only to discover that what they thought was a safe investment was a scam,” the Delaware DOJ detailed.” The sobriquet comes from the scammer’s practice of “fattening” (“butchering”) the victim before making off with the assets.”
Attorney General Jennings stressed that “when victims lose money through cryptocurrency scams, including pig slaughter scams, recovering those funds can be difficult,” adding.
Today’s order takes the first step toward protecting Delaware investors from hog slaughter scams by freezing funds at risk from further transfer by bad actors.
The announcement details that the Investor Protection Unit has received complaints from residents of the state. They explained that they were contacted online by an unknown person who urged them to invest in cryptocurrency. The scammer then urged them to invest further after showing significant returns on their initial investment.
However, the Delaware Department of Justice warned.” Ultimately, they were unable to withdraw their funds and their cryptocurrency disappeared. This international scam has involved thousands of victims and losses are estimated to be in the billions of dollars.”
Working with a data analysis firm, the Investor Protection Unit tracked cryptocurrency owned by the two Delaware plaintiffs to numerous wallets on various crypto exchanges, officials explained.
The cease and desist order prohibits anyone or any entity associated with the wallets from withdrawing or transferring assets owned by the plaintiffs, the Delaware Department of Justice noted and elaborated.
This, in turn, prevents the exchanges holding the wallets from allowing the parties to move the fraudulently acquired crypto, thus effectively freezing accounts with assets belonging to the Delaware victim.
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