Solicitor charged over role in alleged $2.3 million cryptocurrency scam

Thursday, 13 May 2021 10:25:40 AM

A Sydney-based solicitor has been charged over his alleged role in a cryptocurrency scam, which saw four people defrauded of more than $2.3 million.

In 2019, detectives from Sydney City Police Area Command commenced an investigation after receiving reports four people believed they had been defrauded by a suspected cybercurrency scam.

Police were told the victims had responded to an online advertisement in relation to cryptocurrency trade and liaised with an unknown person to deposit money to trade in cybercurrencies.

Between December 2018 and March 2019, the four men – who were then aged between 69 and 95 – deposited a total of $2,311,000 into various Australian bank accounts.

Inquiries revealed the Australian accounts, which had subsequently been closed by the bank due to suspicious transactions, were all linked to a Sydney-based solicitor.

Following extensive investigations, Sydney City detectives arrested a 38-year-old man at Day Street Police Station just after 5pm yesterday (Wednesday 12 May 2021).

The Turramurra man was charged with four counts of recklessly deal with proceeds of crime.

Police will allege in court the man was a paid a total of $173,000 to facilitate the transfer of the victims’ money, which was deposited into his accounts, to an international syndicate believed to be operating out of Israel and Eastern Europe.

He has been refused bail to appear at Central Local Court today (Thursday 13 May 2021).

Inquiries are continuing.

Anyone with information about fraudulent activity and scams is urged to contact Crime Stoppers: 1800 333 000 or https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au. Information is treated in strict confidence. The public is reminded not to report information via NSW Police social media pages.