Thai Actor Arrested For Alleged $24M USD Bitcoin Scam

Thai authorities have arrested 27-year old actor Jiratpisit “Boom” Jaravijit for alleged money laundering following a complaint that he fraudulently lured a foreigner into investing 797 million baht ($24M USD) in cryptocurrency.

Jiratpisit was arrested at a filming location in Bangkok on Wednesday. According to Thai police, Jiratpisit is one of the seven suspects in the alleged cryptocurrency scam, including his older brother and sister. Authorities reportedly received a complaint that they had lured a Finnish man into transferring money in the form of bitcoins in the belief they would buy shares in companies that invested in digital currency Dragon Coin.

“The gang lured the victim to transfer 5,564 bitcoins to its e-wallet, claiming the payment was for the shares of three firms, including DNA 2002 Public Company Limited,” Crimes Suppression Division (CSD) chief Pol Maj-General Maitree Chimcherd said. “But he never received the shares after making the transfer.”

Jiratpisit reportedly transferred about 400 million baht ($12M USD) of the money to his siblings and the money was loaned out with land as collateral. CSD deputy commander Pol Colonel Chakrit Sawasdee said the authorities had already seized land worth more than 200 million baht ($6M USD) owned by Jiratpisit’s siblings.

Jiratpisit has denied any wrongdoing, and insisted that the bank account under investigation was actually managed by his older brother, Parinya. Maitree said Jiratpisit’s siblings would also be charged with public fraud later.

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