$6.4 Million of Thai Actor’s Family Assets Seized in $24 Million Bitcoin Fraud Case
Ten months after a Finnish national filed a complaint after losing 5,564 bitcoins to fraudsters in Thailand, the family of the Thai television actor Jiratpisit ‘Boom’ Jaravijit is now the target of the country’s anti-money laundering agency in relation to the scam.
According to The Nation, Thailand’s Anti-Money Laundering Office (AMLO) has seized assets worth 210 million baht (approximately US$6.4 million) belonging to the Jaravijit family over their involvement in the bitcoin fraud case in which a Finnish national, Aarni Otava Saarimaa, lost bitcoins which were worth approximately US$24 million at the time the crime occurred.
Per the AMLO, the assets which have been seized from Jiratpisit include five bank accounts. Two of the bank accounts had a combined balance of around 4 million baht. Additionally, a plot of land registered in the actor’s name estimated to be worth 43 million baht was also seized bringing the combined value of his seized assets to 47 million baht (US$1.4 million).
Other members of the Jaravijit family whose assets were also seized include the actor’s elder brother, Prinya Jaravijit, and the sister, Supitcha Jaravijit. Just like with Jiratpisit, the assets seized in the case of Prinya and Supitcha were also bank accounts and plots of land. Assets belonging to other non-members of the Jaravijit family believed to have acted as accomplices or accessories to the crime were also confiscated.
The decision to confiscate the assets was made by the transaction committee of the anti-money laundering agency which resolved to seize 64 items in addition to interest. The confiscation order will be in effect for a period of 90 days, running from August 14 to November 11, 2018. According to the AMLO, victims of wrongful seizures will have an opportunity to lodge an appeal.
“Anyone whose assets are unrelated to the alleged wrongdoing and wrongly confiscated may file their appeal with the AMLO secretary-general within 30 days of learning about this order,” said the anti-money laundering agency.
As previously reported by CCN, the scheme to defraud Saarimaa was allegedly masterminded by Prinyawho is said to have invited the Finn to make an assortment of investments including stocks listed on the Stock
Exchange of Thailand as well as in two companies NX Chain Inc and Expay Software. Saarimaa went on to transfer his bitcoin holdings worth 797 million baht at the time (approximately US$24 million) to Prinya’s wallet.
But instead of making the investments as promised, Prinya diverted the funds to bank accounts belonging mostly to members of his family with some of the money being used to buy parcels of land. Saarimaa filed a complaint with the Thai police in January this year.