Police seize $2.7 million of crypto from a British teenager in a credit card fraud scheme

A hand holds a bitcoin toward the sky in this photo representation of the cryptocurrency.
Bitcoin. Edward Smith/Getty Images
  • Police in England seized more than $US2 ($AU3) million worth of crypto from a 17-year-old involved in a credit card scam.
  • Lincolnshire Police said seized 48 bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies after discovering money-laundering links in the case.
  • The teenaged boy was charged with false representation and money laundering.

Police in an English county said they’ve seized more than $US2 ($AU3) million worth of cryptocurrency from a 17-year-old boy who obtained the coins through online fraud.

Detectives from the Lincolnshire Police’s cybercrime unit took possession of the digital currency in a case centered on an unnamed boy involved in an April 2020 credit card scam, the police department said in a statement Tuesday.

The seizure of more than £2 million ($US2 ($AU3).7 million) worth of crypto was one of the first and largest of its kind in Lincolnshire, a county in the East of England with a North Sea coastline.

Police confiscated more than 48 bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Authorities allege the suspect stole personal information to defraud a digital gift voucher company out of roughly £6,000. Detectives then found links to money laundering through cryptocurrency.

“Cryptocurrency is often thought, by criminals, to be an anonymous way to move funds around undetected but I’m glad that in this case, we were able to highlight that the police are now able to effectively investigate offenses of this nature,” said Detective Constable Luke Casey, a cybercrime investigator with Lincolnshire Police.

The teenager was charged with fraud by false representation and money laundering and sentenced Tuesday to a youth rehabilitation center.

Bitcoin during Wednesday’s trading session fell by nearly 6% to trade around $US59,929 ($AU79,621).