News Business Hong Kong Cryptocurrency Scam: Customer Burned in Alleged HK$1 Million ‘Hell Money’ Scheme
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Hong Kong Cryptocurrency Scam: Customer Burned in Alleged HK$1 Million ‘Hell Money’ Scheme

Published by Oscar Liu on 15 May 2024

Hong Kong police have arrested three workers at a currency exchange shop following an alleged cryptocurrency scam. The suspects reportedly showed a customer stacks of “hell money” before convincing him to transfer approximately HK$1 million worth of the digital currency Tether (USDT) to a cryptocurrency wallet provided by them.

Details of the Scam

The victim, a 35-year-old man, reported that he sold USDT at a shop in Tsim Sha Tsui but was unable to retrieve cash as agreed. The suspects vanished after receiving the virtual currency, leaving the victim empty-handed.

What Is “Hell Money”?

“Hell money” refers to ceremonial paper money burned as an offering to ancestors or deities in traditional Chinese culture. In this case, it was used as part of the deception to convince the victim.

Legal Implications

Those involved in the scam face serious consequences. A conviction for fraud under Hong Kong law can result in up to 14 years’ imprisonment, while charges related to obtaining property by deception carry a maximum penalty of 10 years behind bars.

Police Advice

The Hong Kong police urge residents to choose reputable cryptocurrency exchange shops for transactions and carefully inspect banknotes for security features.

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