A US man has been charged for allegedly scamming millions of dollars from would-be investors, many of them Aussie retirees, on Friday, November 12.
A man working out of New South Wales (NSW) had allegedly received more than $2.8 million dollars from 14 would-be investors, many of them retirees, before funnelling the money into Bitcoin, between March and August 2021.
Police were told the retirees were duped into investing in the fake bonds, mainly through self-managed super funds, by scammers posing as trusted financial institutions.
A 52-year-old man was arrested at Kings Cross Police Station, where he was charged with 13 counts of obtaining benefit by deception and 13 counts of reckless deal with proceeds of crime.
As part of the investigation Strike Force Tallagandra detectives, with assistance from the State Crime Command’s Financial Crimes Squad and Cybercrime Squad, executed a search warrant at a unit on Cowper Wharf Roadway, Woolloomooloo, on Friday, November 12.
During the search, officers seized electronic devices and documentation, which will undergo further examination.
The arrest of the alleged scammer comes as national Scam Awareness Week (November 8-12) wound down with this year’s theme of “let’s talk scams”.
More and more people are falling victim to scams every year. Over $222 million has been reported lost so far in 2021. A simple conversation can help protect your loved ones. #ScamsWeek2021 https://t.co/gGeDXUHBvE pic.twitter.com/f967RkWyh3
— Scamwatch_gov_au (@Scamwatch_gov) November 9, 2021
So far this year, Australians have already lost over $236 million to scams.
ACCC Deputy Chair Delia Rickard said an open discussion about scams can help people prevent and avoid being victims of scams.
“The more we talk about scams, the more awareness we have, and the harder it is for scammers to steal our money or personal information,” she said.
“There is no need to feel ashamed or embarrassed about being scammed, because it can happen to anyone, but sharing your experiences with others can help disrupt and prevent scams.”
The ACCC suggests contacting your bank or financial institution immediately if you think you’ve been scammed, or report a suspected scam to Scamwatch.