Chinese Nationals Accused of $73 Million Pig Butchering Crypto Scam Gets Arrested—DOJ Shares Details

By Giuliano De Leon

May 17, 2024 04:18 PM EDT

The US Department of Justice announced the arrest of Chinese nationals who are accused of a million-dollar crypto scam called "pig butchering." On Friday, May 17, the DOJ disclosed the details about the two Chinese nationals. 

Chinese Nationals Accused of $73 Million Pig Butchering Crypto Scam Gets Arrested—DOJ Shares Details
In this photo illustration, a visual representation of the digital Cryptocurrency, Bitcoin is seen on January 09, 2024 in London, England. Bitcoin investors are expecting the U.S. Securities And Exchange Commission (SEC) to issue a decision soon on whether to grant Bitcoin "exchange-traded fund" (ETF) approval.
(Photo : Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

Chinese Nationals Accused of $73 Million Pig Butchering Crypto Scam

According to The New York Post's latest report, the pig butchering crypto scam of two Chinese nationals allowed them to launder around $73 million. The DOJ disclosed the details regarding their arrests:

Yicheng Zhang: a 38-year-old Chinese national residing in Temple City, California, who was arrested in Los Angeles on May 16.

Daren Li: a 41-year-old dual citizen of China and St. Kitts and Nevis. He was taken into custody on Apr. 12 at the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.

"Cryptocurrency investment scams exploit the borderless nature of virtual currency and online communications to defraud victims," said Deputy Atty-General Lisa Monaco via the DOJ's official press release.

Read Also: Fake Shops Propped by Chinese Scammers Stole Money, Personal Data from Over 850,000 People: Data Analysts

How Chinese Nationals Fool Their Victims

The U.S. DOJ explained that the Chinese nationals used the pig butchering scam, which is an investment fraud. Officials stated that they fooled their victims into sending millions of dollars to U.S. bank accounts under their names and dozens of shell companies.

After that, the scammers transferred the money they received to other international and domestic bank accounts. They also used crypto platforms to hide the source, ownership, nature, and control of the funds.

Luckily, the DOJ worked with international and U.S. partners to arrest these Chinese scammers successfully. Authorities stated that the arrest against the two Chinese nationals shows the Department of Justice's ongoing commitment to disrupting the cybercrime ecosystem across all financial markets.

Related Article: BEWARE: Toll Scams Target Drivers Via Text Messages-FBI Shares Tips

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