Raees Cajee, the co-founder of South African crypto funding platform AfriCrypt, has denied claims that he and his brother ran off with billions in investor funds, asserting the platform lost $5 million in a hack.
Final week, Cointelegraph reported that AfriCrypt — an asset manager purporting to supply each day returns of as much as 10% that launched in 2019 — had been accused of disappearing with 69,000 BTC of investor funds in a mysterious exploit.
Whereas AfriCrypt had notified customers of the hack on April 13, suspicions had been instantly raised because the message urged traders to keep away from taking authorized motion as it will decelerate the restoration of the funds. Shortly thereafter, the brothers reportedly halted AfriCrypt’s operations and went lacking.
Talking with The Wall Avenue Journal on June 28, Raees sought to counter the accusations laid in opposition to AfriCrypt and its co-founders, asserting the pair went into hiding after receiving loss of life threats from some “very, very dangerous people.”
Raees additionally rejected claims that $3.6 billion in funds is lacking, asserting the agency solely managed $200 million throughout its peak in April, and that solely $5 million in investor funds are unaccounted for after the hack.
“At the height of the market, we were managing just over $200 million.”
Hanekom Attorneys, the legislation agency representing AfriCrypt’s clients, alleges the brothers transferred $3.6 price of BTC from AfriCrypt’s accounts and consumer wallets, earlier than shifting the funds by “various dark web tumblers and mixers” to stop the funds from being traced additional.
If the allegations in opposition to AfriCrypt are true, the incident would surpass the losses from South African-based Ponzi-scheme Mirror Buying and selling Worldwide, which pulled in 23,000 BTC from unsuspecting traders in the nation’s largest confirmed crypto fraud thus far. At immediately’s costs, the stolen BTC would fetch $800 million.
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Lawyer John Oosthuizen, who’s representing the Cajee brothers, instructed the BBC on June 26 that the pair has “categorically denied” the allegations they stole their investors’ funds.
“They maintain that it was a hack, and they were fleeced of these assets,” he added.
South Africa’s Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA) released a statement regarding the case on June 24, noting the project appeared to have Ponzi-like characteristics:
“This entity was offering exceptionally high and unrealistic returns akin to those offered by unlawful investment schemes commonly known as Ponzi’s.”
Nevertheless, the FSCA asserted it can’t take any motion in opposition to AfriCrypt as crypto property are presently unregulated in South Africa.
In line with WSJ, a separate group of traders is searching for AfriCrypt’s liquidation. The brothers plan to floor for a July 19 courtroom listening to relating to their claims.