62 People Arrested in Turkey, Allegedly Connected to the Thodex Exchange Heist
Shortly after launching an investigation against Turkey’s notorious crypto exchange, Thodex, the local police have apprehended 62 people in connection to the company.
At the same time, reports claimed that the founder and CEO of the exchange has vowed to refund users and return to Turkey to face justice.
62 People Arrested in Turkey
CryptoPotato reported yesterday the developments coming from Turkey in which the third-largest crypto exchange had closed its doors earlier in the week. Shortly after, the founder and CEO of the company reportedly fled the country, and some estimations asserted that he escaped with roughly $2 billion in customers’ funds.
Local authorities launched an investigation, leading to today’s arrests. The state-run Anadolu Agency reported that the police had detained 62 people in eight cities, including Istanbul.
Nevertheless, 16 people have remained at large as the Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office had issued detention warrants for a total of 78 suspects over their alleged connections to the exchange.
Furthermore, the police seized an undisclosed amount of digital materials and documents. The country’s financial crimes regulator also blocked all bank accounts based in Turkey with any affiliation to the exchange.
Is the Founder Coming Back?
As mentioned above, Faruk Fatih Ozer, the chief executive officer and founder of Thodex, had fled the country with up to $2 billion. The lawyer who filed a criminal complaint against Ozer, Abdullah Usame Ceran, alleged him with “aggravated fraud.”
However, a Bloomberg coverage stated that Ozer had released a statement from an unknown location indicating his change of plans. In it, the notorious founder of the popular exchange reportedly said he would reimburse all customers.
Furthermore, he promised to return to Turkey to face justice. Yet, Ozer failed to specify the precise date when he plans to do either.
This disturbing news for Turkish crypto investors comes amid the country’s attempts to reduce cryptocurrencies’ alleged involvement in illicit activities. Earlier this month, the government said it would ban users from employing digital assets as payment instruments starting from April 30th.